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Chief Warrant Officer E. J. Kahn, Jr. 

Technical Sergeant Henry McLemore 

From materials -provided by the Office of 
Technical Information, Special Information 
Section, Headquarters Army Ground Forces. 

1945 . 


Copyright 1945 by Infantry Journal, Inc. 

All rights reserved. No part of this book may be 
reproduced in any form without permission. 
For information address The Infantry Journal, 
1115 17th Street NW, Washington 6, D. C. 

First edition 
December 1945 




Preface by General Jacob L. Devers vii 

Introduction ix 

1st Infantry Division • • ■ * 

2nd Infantry Division . 3 

3d Infantry Division 5 

4th Infantry Division 7 

5th Infantry Division 9 

6th Infantry Division ........... 11 

7th Infantry Division 13 

8th Infantry Division 15 

9th Infantry Division 17 

10th Mountain Division • 20 

11th Airborne Division 22 

13th Airborne Division 25 

17th Airborne Division . . , . . . . ■ • • ■ 27 

24th Infantry Division . . . . . . • . . ■ . 29 

25th Infantry Division ........... 31 

26th Infantry Division 33 

27th Infantry Division 35 

28th Infantry Division 37 

29th Infantry Division ........... 39 

30th Infantry Division ........... 41 

31st Infantry Division . , . . . . ... . . 43 

32nd Infantry Division 45 

33d Infantry Division 47 

34th Infantry Division . . . . 49 

35th Infantry Division 51 

36th Infantry Division 53 

37th Infantry Division ........... 56 

38th Infantry Division . . . . 58 

40th Infantry Division 60 

41st Infantry Division 62 


42nd Infantry Division 
43d Infantry Division 
44th Infantry Division 
45th Infantry Division 
63d Infantry Division 
65th Infantry Division 
66th Infantry Division 
69th Infantry Division 
70th Infantry Division 
71st Infantry Division 
75th Infantry Division 
76th Infantry Division 
77th Infantry Division 
78th Infantry Division 
79th Infantry Division 
80th Infantry Division 
81st Infantry Division 
82nd Airborne Division 
83d Infantry Division 
84th Infantry Division 
85th Infantry Division 
86th Infantry Division 
87th Infantry Division 
88th Infantry Division 
89th Infantry Division 
90th Infantry Division 
91st Infantry Division 
92nd Infantry Division 
93d Infantry Division 
94th Infantry Division 
95th Infantry Division 
96th Infantry Division 
97th Infantry Division 
98th Infantry Division 

99th Infantry Division , , . , 136 

100th Infantry Division 138 

101st Airborne Division 140 

102nd Infantry Division 142 

103d Infantry Division . . 144 

104th Infantry Division 146 

106th Infantry Division .148 

Americal Division 150 

Philippine Division 152 

1st Cavalry Division 154 

Armored Insignia 157 

1st Armored Division 159 

2nd Armored Division 162 

3d Armored Division 164 

4th Armored Division 166 

5th Armored Division 168 

6th Armored Division 170 

7th Armored Division » . 172 

8th Armored Division 174 

9th Armored Division . . . 176 

10th Armored Division 178 

11th Armored Division . . 180 

12th Armored Division 182 

13th Armored Division 184 

14th Armored Division 186 

16th Armored Division . . 188 

20th Armored Division 190 

Appendix I: Order of Battle of U.S. Forces 192 

Appendix II: Campaigns and Battles, U.S. Army, 1941-45 198 

Maps , 202 

Colored Illustrations 221 



As Commanding General of the 6th Army Group in Europe, I 
considered it my responsibility to be constantly informed of the 
activities of each fighting division assigned to my command. As 
informative battle reports arrived in my headquarters, I often 
considered both the advisability and desirability of immediately 
releasing accounts of impressive battle achievements to Ameri- 
can citizens at home so that they, too, might be cognizant of the 
ever-growing record of success of these basic Army Ground 
Forces fighting units. 

Unfortunately, however, public release of such accomplish- 
ments at that time would have furnished the enemy with in- 
formation which would have been of invaluable assistance to 
him, and we were required, therefore, to observe caution in our 
published tributes. Now that the war has been concluded suc- 
cessfully and restrictions on the battle participation of our 
troops have been lifted, the daring exploits of our divisions can 
be published. 

To my knowledge, this book is the first attempt to cover the 
history of every division that comprised our ground combat 
forces. The battleground of these divisions encompassed the 
entire world and the battles they fought were won the hard way, 
step by step, and yard by yard. Every step over every yard 
meant a risk for some unheralded foot-soldier; and for every 
mile gained a heavy price was paid, not only in money and 
material, but in pain, and fear, and flowing blood. 

The men of die divisions and attached units that contributed 
so much to our victories should never have cause to doubt 
that the debt we owe them is a large one, or that we can ever 
pay it in full. 


Commanding General 
Army Ground Forces 



No soldier's patch is worn with greater pride than that dis- 
played on the shoulder of a man who has belonged to a combat 
division. In World War II, as in every past war, the major 
share of our fighting has been borne by our ground troops, par- 
ticularly those of the Infantry. Most of our Infantrymen belong 
to divisions, which are our Army's principal combat teams, com- 
posed of soldiers who are trained and expected to do one 
primary job— fight. In a huge army made up of seemingly 
bewildering groups of specialists— an army in which the soldiers 
who actually come to grips with the enemy must of necessity be 
a distinct minority— our divisions hold a unique position. They 
are the Army's fighting core, and whatever any other forces do 
is largely preliminary or supporting to their actions. 

Most of the combat ground soldiers who have already re- 
turned from theaters of operations, and most of those not yet 
home, wear a divisional shoulder patch. They will rightly expect 
the citizens for whom they have sacrificed so much to know 
something about what they have done and what the organiza- 
tions in which they have served have done. It is manifestly 
impossible for any person to hope to become familiar in detail 
with the accomplishments of all our Army divisions, or to be 
able instantly to recognize every one of their elaborately varied 
shoulder insignia. 

But a little learning is no longer a dangerous thing. Earlier 
in the war, largely for security reasons, much information about 
divisional achievements could not be released until it was old 
and apt to be buried under the steady flow of livelier news. For 
those members of the public who have tried diligently to keep 
abreast of the progress of our fighting units, the task has usually 
been difficult and often impossible. American citizens at home 
can thus readily absolve themselves of any charge that they 
have been inexcusably indifferent toward the battle accomplish- 
ments of any particular group of soldiers. Such a defense, how- 
ever, may carry little weight with a returning combat veteran, 
who has spent one, two, or three years abroad as a fighting 
member of a division, thinks it is the best damn division in the 
world, and may want to make something of it if you don't agree. 


You had better agree. 

Today, pride in divisional achievements, and knowledge of 
them, need no longer be limited to the select fraternity of the 
division itself. Secrecy is not a governing factor, any more, in 
any recitation of the deeds of divisions that fought in any theater 
of the war. For those who want to know them the facts are 

This book is not a complete history of our combat divisions. 
It is, rather, an attempt to assemble for the first time enough 
material on every one of our divisions to give the average citizen 
a brief idea of where each has been and what each has done. 
Some of our divisions have had many months' more battle ex- 
perience than others, and space has made it necessary to restrict 
the account of their accomplishments to the bare minimum. 
Wherever possible, this material has been based on historical 
reports prepared by the divisions themselves. In some cases, 
the available source material has been regrettably skimpy. In 
several cases, it has been noted that two or more divisions have 
set forth virtually identical claims for a single objective. The 
explanation, of course, is that frequently more than one division 
has attacked more than one city or defense line, and that 
divisional historians have shown understandable partisanship 
toward their own outfits. This book tries to be fair to all divi- 
sions, but it may inadvertently have hurt the feelings of a 
particular unit by neglecting to mention some achievement of 
which the division itself is especially proud. It would have 
taken an inordinate amount of time to check each division's 
story with the division concerned, and the editors have there- 
fore been obliged to fall back on official records and on the testi- 
mony of officers and men familiar through personal experience 
with the divisions' histories. 

Divisions fight on the ground, and it is there that our last- 
ing gains in this war have been scored, our major victories 
won, most of our heroes spawned, and most of our casualties 
suffered. Sixty-four per cent of the Army's Medals of Honor 
and seventy-five per cent of its casualties have been earned by 
Infantrymen— and yet only one out of every five soldiers is an 
Infantryman. These statistics are the measure of the foot sol- 
dier's unparalleled risks and unparalleled deeds, and nearly all 


our foot soldiers have fought as members of combat divisions. 

It would be unjust, however, not to mention here those 
thousands of ground soldiers who have performed notably in 
combat as members of separate task forces, regiments, battal- 
ions, and other non-divisional units. Most of these have been 
artillery, tank, cavalry, antiaircraft, or combat engineer men, 
serving under direct control of corps or armies, or sometimes 
attached to, though not actually assigned to, divisions. Others 
of these soldiers have been Infantrymen— some of the best the 
Army has. The 100th Infantry Battalion, for instance, later a 
part of the 442nd Regimental Combat Team, contained the 
famous Japanese-American fighters whose record in action in 
Italy and France should be known to all other Americans. There 
have been the six Ranger battalions, spearheads of attacks in 
Europe and the Philippines. The long list includes the 1st Spe- 
cial Service Force, a picked group of Canadians and Americans 
who operated in Italy; Merrill's Marauders and the Mars Task 
Force, of Burma fame; and dozens of other small units. 

By far the greater part of our combat ground forces, how- 
ever, have been assigned to divisions. After the fall of Bataan, 
our combat Army consisted of 89 of them— one cavalry, one 
mountain, five airborne, 16 armored, and 69 infantry. Most of 
them are relatively new. On August 3, 1940, when the Army 
began to expand with the establishment of a General Head- 
quarters under the War Department, our ground forces were 
pitifully small. As a fighting nucleus, the United States had 
eight Regular Army infantry divisions, all considerably under 
strength; one armored division, barely out of the experimental 
stage; and a little more than one cavalry division. There were 
no airborne divisions at all, and, even by the summer of 1941, 
our total complement of paratroopers consisted of exactly one 
battalion. Many divisions which are by now veterans of ex- 
tremely arduous combat existed only on paper when the Japs 
struck at Pearl Harbor on December 7, 1941. All our divisions 
are numbered, with two exceptions— the Philippine and the 
Americal. Armored divisions have their own numerical se- 
quence. Infantry, airborne, and mountain divisions are in 
another sequence, divided into three parts. The lowest numbers 
are those of the so-called Regular divisions— usually composed 


chiefly of selectees but built on a framework of experienced 
prewar personnel. The middle group of numbers— from 26 
through 45— are those of the National Guard divisions. The rest 
are those of divisions activated during the national emergency 
for war service only, a number of which, however, fought in 
World War I, then became inactive, and were built up again 
for the Army of World War II. 

At the start of this war the only divisions upon which the 
War Department could depend for reasonably immediate battle 
service were the Regular and Guard outfits. The latter had 
begun to go on active duty in September 1940. Though the 
National Guard has been the subject of much controversial talk, 
in and out of the Army, the fact remains that without our Guard 
divisions we simply would not have been able to conduct our 
early operations in the Pacific and Mediterranean Theaters. 
The first all-Selective-Service divisions to see action, the 85th 
and 88th, did not start fighting until the spring of 1944— more 
than a year and a half after our older divisions had gone into 
action. It was the Guard divisions-the 27th, 32nd, 34th, 36th, 
37th, 41st, and 45th, to name a few— which, along with such 
Regular outfits as the 1st, 3d, 7th and 9th Infantry and the 
1st and 2nd Armored Divisions, did the bulk of our Army's 
fighting early in the war. 

These veteran outfits have, accordingly, suffered most heav- 
ily. It is commonly thought, for instance, that an infantry 
division has about 15,000 people in it. That is more or less so 
at any one time. But through transfers and, principally, battle 
casualties, some of our old divisions have had many times , that 
number of men pass through their ranks and thus become eligi- 
ble to wear the division insignia on one shoulder or the other- 
left shoulder for those presently assigned, and right for alumni. 
One single regiment of the 45th Division (the normal strength 
of a regiment is roughly 3,000 men) has had some 25,000 men 
assigned to it alone since its activation five years ago. As of 
April 30, 1945, the three divisions with the highest number of 
casualties of any in the Army were, understandably, among the 
group of outfits longest tested in battle— the 3d, 45th and 36th 
Infantry Divisions, with respective casualty totals of 34,224, 
27,554 and 27,344. Remember— the strength of a division is only 

xii . 

some 15,000 men. It is interesting to note that these three divi- 
sions were the ones that spearheaded the Seventh Army's inva- 
sion of Southern France on August 15, 1944. 

Our modern infantry divisions are considerably streamlined 
versions of their World War I forerunners. In the earlier war, 
when mobility was a less desirable asset than mass, divisions 
were "square" (being built around two infantry brigades of 
two regiments each) and relatively cumbersome. In the peace- 
time years, the War Department began to experiment with a 
radically different division— a triangular one fashioned around 
three infantry regiments. For a while, the 2nd Infantry Division 
was assigned the role of military guinea pig, and in 1937, while 
temporily triangularized, it made a move by motor so unprece- 
dentedly swift that observers were amazed. (This was back in 
the pre-atomic days when observers were more easily amazed. ) 
Regular Army divisions were subsequently triangularized, and 
a few months after the National Guard divisions, originally 
square, were federalized, each lost one of its four infantry regi- 
ments and went through other changes, such as shifting from 
a brigade of field artillery to four battalions. Some of the in- 
fantry regiments so detached went on to establish distinguished 
combat records on their own. The 158th Infantry, for example, 
initially part of the 45th Division, was shipped to Panama for 
training, there adopted the nickname of the "Bushmasters," 
and eventually saw combat in New Britain, New Guinea, and 
the Philippines. 

The infantry division, first formed in 1917, is the oldest and 
most prominent divisional organization. Its present make-up is 
triangular down to and including its tiniest unit— the rifle squad. 
The division's principal striking power (see next two pages) 
consists of three regiments, each one of three battalions and 
supporting troops, each battalion in turn of three rifle compa- 
nies and support, each company of three rifle platoons and 
support, and each platoon, finally, of three squads. Every group 
of foot soldiers has its own supporting fire. A regiment fights 
as part of a combat team, assisted by a battalion of light field 
artillery in addition to its own cannon and antitank units. A 
battalion has its own heavy-weapons company, and a company 
its own weapons platoon. Even the rifle squad has its own 





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An army gioup consists of 2 ,or more 
armies; iiu army of 2 or more corps; 
e. corps of 2 or more divisions. 


heavy weapon-or base of flre-the Browning automatic rifle. 

But an infantry division is much, much more than a bunch 
of riflemen moving forward with somebody throwing helpful 
shells over their heads as they advance. A division is a com- 
letely self-sustaining unit. It is the smallest complete com- 
ination of the ground arms and services. It contains, in addi- 
tion to its three regimental combat teams, a battalion of medium 
field artillery, engineer and medical battalions, a cavalry re- 
connaissance troop, headquarters, signal, quartermaster, and 
ordnance light maintenance companies, a military police platoon, 
chaplains, and a band. In combat, this varied group of different 
units is usually augmented by attached tanks, tank destroyers, 
antiaircraft artillery, hospitals, and a number of special de- 
tachments. A division has planes (for spotting artillery targets 
and hits), boats (for crossing streams), and hundreds of vehi- 
cles ranging from quarter-ton jeeps to a six-ton prime-mover 
wrecker. It has its own post office, its own post exchanges, 
more often than not its own newspaper, its own alumni associa- 
tions, and its own tall tales. All of its many units, however, form 
a single team for combat. 

The infantry division has the primary offensive mission of 
closing with the enemy's land armies and destroying or cap- 
turing them. Defensively, its job is to hang onto the ground 
it is on, deny it to the enemy, and beat off counterattacks. The 
division can fight for long stretches without relief (there are 
several instances of outfits having stayed in the line for more 
than 100 days without rest), can act independently or can 
readily serve as part of a larger force, such as a corps or army. 

The infantry division has a little more than 14,000 men 
regularly assigned to it, and is exceeded in size only by the 
mountain division (a special type of infantry division), which 
has a few more people and, in prominent addition, more than 
6,000 horses and mules. There is a corresponding decrease in 
vehicles. Mountain troops are specially trained to fight on peaks 
and slopes, and are astonished if they ever get a chance to 
march on level ground. 

The infantry division, like any military organization, is a 
coordinated team, and the main function of all members of the 
team is to get the riflemen in the division forward. The armored 


division is slightly smaller in manpower (10,000), and is com- 
posed of two combat commands and a reserve command rather 
than three regiments, with 272 tanks as its main striking power. 
The essential difference between an infantry division and an 
armored division is that in the first the artillery and attached 
tank components support the infantry, and in the second the 
artillery and infantry components support the armor except 
when the armor cannot lead the way and the infantry must, 
as happened a number of times in the course of the war. 

The armored division is a useful weapon in areas where its 
mobility and fire power are particularly applicable. As a result, 
not one of our armored divisions was employed in the Pacific, 
though smaller tank units proved effective in helping to rout 
Japs out of their caves and tunnels. An armored division is 
especially handy during fighting when our forces and the 
enemy's are moving rapidly—in harassing the enemy's rear posi- 
tions after a breakthrough, in speeding forward and by-passing 
strongholds to disrupt enemy communications and supply lines 
and seize critical terrain features. In general, during large- 
scale attacks against strong enemy forces, infantry divisions 
created the opportunity for armor to be used and then the 
speedier armored divisions exploited that opportunity. 

The airborne division is the smallest ( 8,000 men ) and most 
swiftly transportable of all our divisions, and its main fighting 
units are infantry. Once it gets into action, however, it is less 
mobile than an armored division. Paratroops and glider troops 
are notable for their speed of advance, of course, but this ce- 
lerity exists only up to getting into combat. Once they reach 
the battlefield, they have far fewer vehicles than any other 
division. Airborne units are not ordinarily kept in the lines for 
long periods, though on occasion they have fought for long 
stretches (the 82nd and 101st both spent many weeks battling 
as regular foot soldiers). Their special job is to drop behind 
enemy lines, capture Or destroy such vital installations as air- 
fields or supply dumps, create diversions, delay retreats, and 
take areas— such as islands— not easily accessible to forces mov- 
ing overland. 

Cavalry divisions— of which our war Army had only one, 
the famous 1st— have no horses in them. The 1st Cavalry Divi- 


sion is a completely mechanized outfit, and speed has been its 
hallmark despite the fact that during its early operations, in 
the Admiralty Islands, it had to dispense with its vehicles and 
fight dismounted. 

No division, no matter what kind, is greater than the men 
who make it up. The short histories that follow are histories of 
units, to be sure, but they are the histories, too, of the hundreds 
of thousands of foot soldiers to whom a casually named town 
in a foreign land may have been a week of agony, to whom an 
obscure river or mountain may be a landmark memorable above 
all others, and for whom no written words will ever catch the 
import of the moments those names bring back. There are many 
men who have worn the divisional insignia that are so pe- 
culiarly the mark of the fighting soldier. Some of these men 
served with a division only briefly, and some for months or 
years. Whoever they are, and wherever they are, they will 
always be a part of the divisions with which they have fought, 
for they gave life and blood to our nation's finest combat outfits. 




1st infantry Division 

The oldest and probably the best known of all American in- 
fantry divisions is the 1st, sometimes nicknamed the "Fighting 
First," often called by its proud members simply "The First," 
and most recently known as "The Red One." Germans who had 
seen the red "1" on 1st Division shoulders in North Africa, 
Sicily, and all over the European continent gave the Division 
that name, and the lst's soldiers have since used it themselves. 
A German, incidentally, involuntarily provided the 1st with its 
shoulder patch, According to legend, the original red "1" was 
improvised from the cap of an enemy soldier who had been 
killed by a 1st Division Doughboy during World War I, when 
the Division earned the right to proclaim itself first in France, 
first to fire on the enemy, first to suffer casualties, first to take 
prisoners, first to stage a major offensive, first to enter Germany 
and— as an equally notable exception— last to come home. 

The Fighting First got off to an early start in this war when, 
after amphibious training in the States and in England, it surged 
ashore at Oran on D-day of the North African invasion, Novem- 
ber 8, 1942. It fought through Tunisia, taking heavy casualties 
at Easserine Pass, but holding its ground against the enemy 
and living up to its motto, "No mission too difficult; no sacrifice 
too great," as it hammered away at the vaunted Afrika Korps 
at Gafsa, El Guettar, Tebessa, and other battlefields. 

The lst's second D-day was at Gela, Sicily. In 37 days, the 
Division took 18 cities, inching its way up cliffs and along tor- 


tuous mountain trails, and distinguishing itself by smashing the 
Hermann Goering Division and taking the important objective 
of Troina, where the 16th Infantry Regiment, which dates back 
to 1798, made a gallant frontal attack coordinated with a flank 
assault by the 18th Infantry, a comparatively new outfit dating 
back only to 1812. 

After Sicily, the 1st sailed back to England to get ready for 
the invasion of the Continent. On D-day in Normandy, June 6, 
1944, it went ashore at Omaha Beach, the most strongly forti- 
fied section of the coast. Some of its units suffered 30 per cent 
casualties in the first bloody hour of fighting, but the Division 
hung on to the beachhead, forced its way inland by sheer de- 
termination, destroyed a whole German division that stood in 
its way, and prompted Ernie Pyle to write, later, "Now that it 
is over it seems to me a pure miracle that we ever took the 
beach at all." For their heroism at Omaha, 740 men of a single 
battalion of the 16th Infantry were awarded the Bronze Star. 

In the July breakthrough out of Normandy at St. L6, the 
1st swung to the west, took Marigny, and then trapped 30,000 
Germans near Coutances. In August it moved 300 miles in a 
week to take Soissons, where in the last war the 1st had suf- 
fered 9,000 casualties in four days. (Major General Clarence R. 
Huebner, who led the Division at the time, had been a bat- 
talion commander in the 1st at Soissons in 1918. ) The Division 
continued to Aachen, fighting through the city street by street 
and house by house after the besieged defenders refused to 
surrender. Then the 1st found itself in the thick of the Hiirtgen 
Forest fighting. Companies E and F of the 26th Infantry Regi- 
ment were completely wiped out, but replacements for the lost 
units, fighting from foxholes against a heavy tank-infantry at- 
tack, avenged their comrades by killing 1,200 Germans in three 
days. During Rundstedt's counteroffensive in the Ardennes, the 
1st successfully attacked in the St. Vith-Malmedy sector, drove 
on to the Rhine, and, when the 9th Armored Division captured 
intact the bridge at Remagen, swept across and raced deep into 
Germany. By V-E Day, all three regiments of the Division had 
been cited and several smaller units had earned additional 
honors. The men who wore the Red One had good cause for 
thinking that the 1st was still first. 




2nd Infantry Division 

Like the "Fighting First," the 2nd Infantry Division had an out- 
standing record during the last war, and it became the only 
division all of whose wartime units were authorized to wear the 
fourragere of the Croix de Guerre. At Chateau-Thierry and 
Belleau Wood, the 2nd —"Second to None," according to its 
own slogan— made military history a generation ago. Composed 
then of both Infantrymen and Marine elements, it earned more 
decorations than any other World War I unit. And among its 
men was one since-forgotten truck driver who painstakingly 
adorned the side of his vehicle with a handsome shield framing 
an Indian head— the Indian Head that thousands of "Second to 
None" soldiers now wear on their shoulders today. 

The 2nd hasn't had exactly a back seat in this war, either. In 
October 1943, the Indian Head outfit sailed for England, and 
on June 7, 1944— D-day plus 1— it landed at St, Laurent-sur-Mer 
in Normandy, while enemy shells were still pouring into the 
thinly held beachhead. For 70 straight days the Division fought 
against crack enemy forces, including the formidable 3rd Para- 
chute Division, which the Indian Head men first encountered 
on June 11 in the Berigny-St. Georges-d'Elle-Ivon sector, and 
against which the 2nd waged a personal grudge fight for many 
weeks. The 2nd was instrumental in the fighting around St. L6 
that led to the breakthrough out of Normandy, and was cred- 
ited by Lieutenant General Leonard T. Gerow, then its corps 


commander, with having been largely responsible for victory 
in the grim battle of the hedgerows. . 

Sweeping 300 miles from Normandy to Brittany, the 2nd 
next set its sights on the besieged German defenders of the port 
of Brest-among them the same 3d Parachute Division. With 
the 8th and 29th Infantry Divisions, the 2nd took Brest in 39 
days, although military experts had predicted a 90-day 

Next stop on the 2nd's fighting itinerary was the Siegfried 
Line. The Division had advanced through it to a point near 
St. Vith and was just getting started on an attack when, in mid- 
December, Rundstedt launched his famous breakthrough. 
Cooks, clerks, and military police were thrown into the front 
lines, and the 2nd held its ground in the snow-covered Biilligen 
area until the Battle of the Bulge was won. 

Then the Division began rolling again. It spilled out into 
Germany in February and March, capturing Monschau and 
Ahrweiler, among other key cities. By the end of April, the 
Division had moved on to Czechoslovakia and had firmly im- 
printed its name on the historical records of the city of Pilsen, 
up to then known merely for its beer. 

During its last four months of fighting, the Indian Head 
Division operated under the First Army, and no one was better 
qualified to judge its effectiveness than General Courtney H. 
Hodges, the army commander. "What the 2nd Division has 
done," the general said shortly after the Ardennes fighting, 
"will live forever in the pages of history of the United States 


3d Infantry Division 

"Take a look at the record, buddy." 

That's the answer a soldier of any other division gets when 
he challenges the claim of 3d Infantry Division Doughboys that 
their outfit— "The Fighting Third"— is the best in the Army. 

The 3d has a superlative record, not only in this war but in 
World War I, when it earned the nickname "Rock of the Marne" 
because of its impregnable stand against the Germans' last great 
counteroffensive. Its participation in three major battles in 1918 
is symbolized by the three diagonal stripes of its shoulder patch. 

The "Fighting Third" is the only American division which 
fought the Nazis on every front in this war— North Africa, Sicily, 
Italy, France, and Germany. It has had more casualties— nearly 
35,000— than any other division, and it holds the record for high 
combat citations, no fewer than 32 of its officers and men having 
won the Medal of Honor. 

The 3d's first D-day came on November 8, 1942, when it 
spearheaded the landing near Casablanca and, in three days of 
sharp fighting, took a good slice of French Morocco and was in 
position to storm Casablanca when the French surrendered. In 
the final stages of the Tunisian campaign the Division was 
moved across Algeria by truck and was about to go back into 
action when the Afrika Korps was knocked out for good. 

After two months of training, the 3d went ashore on D-day 
of the Sicilian campaign. The Division's capture of Palermo was 
sensational. The Doughboys moved so swiftly that when Ameri- 


can tanks and armored cars raced in to take the city, they found 
it already occupied by the footsloggers. And when the last 
enemy stronghold on Sicily— Messina— fell to the Allies, it too 
was taken by the 3d. 

At Salerno, the Fighting Third took over the beachhead and 
pushed the Germans northward and broke through the defenses 
of Acerno, enabling the British to enter Naples. The Division 
punched ahead and participated in the bloody crossing of the 

When the Anzio campaign was launched the 3d again drew 
"the short straw." Its Doughs splashed ashore in the first wave 
at Anzio, and for the next four months held on to its toehold in 
the face of the most furious counterattacks of the war. It was 
here that the 3d established the record for the most casualties 
suffered in any one day by an American division. 

In the big May push the 3d figured prominently in the lib- 
eration of Rome. With only a few days of rest the men started 
training for their next operation— the invasion of southern 

Led by Major General John Wilson ( "Iron Mike") O'Daniel, 
the 3d took more than 1,000 prisoners in its first twenty-four 
hours on French soil, and began a race that carried to Avignon 
and the Rh6iie River, then toward the Allied armies which had 
broken out of Normandy. 

The fortress city of Besancon fell in two days, but during 
October the Division advanced slowly and bloodily in front of 
the Vosges Line. In November the breaching of the line was 
completed, and the Doughs moved into Strasbourg. 

For its superb fighting on the northern perimeter of the 
Colmar bridgehead, when it battled through snow, storms, 
enemy-infested marshes and woods, and over flat plains criss- 
crossed by unfordable streams, the entire Division was cited by 
the President. Then, as a major unit of the Seventh Army, the 
3d Division drove across the Rhine and deep into Germany. 

On V-E Day the "Fighting Third" was at Salzburg, and 
was using as a messhall the dining room of Schloss Kless- 
heim, where Hitler once housed his more important guests. 


4th Infantry Division 

When the 4th Infantry Division sailed proudly past the Statue 
of Liberty in July 1945, it brought with it two war souvenirs 
for the people of New York from the people of Paris—a section 
of the iron gate that bounds the Tuileries Gardens, and a scarred 
stone cornice from the Hotel Crillon. It was highly appropriate 
that the "Famous Fourth" should have been selected to bear 
these gifts, because, when the Parisians, crouching behind the 
Tuileries gate waited for the liberation of their city, it was the 
men of the Ivy Division who streamed in and crushed the last 
German resistance. 

Of the Parisians who thrilled at the sight of the shoulder 
insignia of the 4th, probably very few guessed why its soldiers 
wore that particular kind of green foliage. The selection of that 
design is one of the few known instances of authorized military 
frivolity. "I-vy" is simply the spelling out, in letter form, of the 
Roman numerals for "four." 

There was nothing frivolous about the 4th when it returned 
to France in 1944 for its second war service in that country. On 
D-day, the 8th Infantry, one of the three venerable Army regi- 
ments that form the backbone of the 4th, surged ashore at Utah 
Beach and earned the distinction of being the first unit among 
all the invasion forces to touch the coast of Normandy. For the 
previous five months, the whole Division, based at Devon in 
England, had been diligently practicing landings on replicas 
of the Normandy beaches. Three unit citations were given to 


elements of the 4th for their work in Normandy, but to offset 
these honors the division lost its assistant commander, who was 
posthumously awarded the Medal of Honor— Brigadier General 
Theodore Roosevelt, Jr. 

After the 4th landed, its next accomplishment was to effect 
the relief of isolated units of the 82d Airborne Division who had 
parachuted into France and had been cut off for thirty-six hours 
at Ste.-Mere-Eglise. The 4th helped free Cherbourg, swung 
back to St. L6— when it spearheaded the breakthrough by rid- 
ing through the enemy lines clinging to tanks of the 2nd Arm- 
ored Division, and smashed toward Paris in the Third Army's 
drive across France. 

By early September, the Ivy soldiers had fought their way 
into Belgium, and soon cracked the Siegfried Line. A patrol 
of the 4th's 22nd Infantry Regiment became one of the first 
American units to enter Germany when it slipped across the 
border on September 11. During the next couple of months, the 
division inched its way deeper into Germany, finding itself in 
December deep in the Hiirtgen Forest, where, amid overhead 
shell bursts, the Doughboys fought savagely against fanatical 
resistance and one regiment destroyed five German regiments 
in a 19-day battle. 

In the Battle of the Bulge, the 4th held the line in Luxem- 
bourg, where its tenacity prompted General Patton to announce, 
"No American division in France has excelled the magnificent 
record of the 4th Infantry Division." In January the Ivy Divi- 
sion crossed the Sauer River, and then took one town after an- 
other—among them Fuhren, Vianden, Priini, Adenau, and Reif- 
ferscheid. In capturing the last two places, the division moved 
20 miles in 24 hours. By V-E Day, it had marched to the Aus- 
trian border and was stationed just below Bad Tolz, in Southern 
Bavaria. It had moved fast, and had hit hard, but, like most of 
our combat divisions, had had to pay a heavy price for its gains. 
By V-E Day, the Ivy Division had suffered 21,550 casualties. 


5th Infantry Division 

Three months before Pearl Harbor, a regimental combat team 
of the 5th Infantry Division sailed to Iceland. In March 1942 
the rest of the division embarked for that island base. By August 
1943 the whole division had moved on to England and then 
Northern Ireland. These early moves were cloaked with secrecy, 
and little was known of the whereabouts of the soldiers who 
wore the Red Diamond on their shoulders. By August 1944, 
however, when the 5th was rushing across France, the Red 
Diamond was very much in evidence— so much, in fact, that the 
Germans who had felt its cutting strength decided that the 
division's nickname was insufficiently descriptive. They gave 
the 5th a new name— the "Red Devils." 

The 5th was no stranger to France, or to German soldiers. In 
World War I, the Red Diamond Division, entering the lines on 
June 14, 1918, fought at St.Mihiel and along the Meuse, and 
took 2,356 prisoners. In this war, it landed in Normandy on 
July 10, and in two months sped some 700 miles across France 
to the Moselle River, at one point travelling so fast that it had to 
halt for five days for its supplies to catch up with it. On its way, 
it seized Angers, Chartres, Etampes, and other cities, and made 
forced crossings of 20 rivers, including the Main, Seine, Yonne, 
Marne, Aisne, and Meuse. 

When it reached the Moselle, the 5th was given the mission 
of establishing a bridgehead on the east bank in preparation 


for the Third Army's attack on the fortified city of Metz, which 
had never been captured by a frontal assault although various 
armies had been trying for a couple of thousand years. On Sep- 
tember 8, three years after the first elements of the Division 
had gone overseas, the Red Diamond Doughboys stormed 
across the Moselle and dug in on the opposite bank, They held 
their bridgehead through a nightmare of enemy steel; one unit 
was counterattacked 36 times during a single 60-hour stretch. 
With the bridgehead secure, the 5th was withdrawn for a rest, 
and on November 1st was sent back into the line for the all-out 
assault on Metz. With the 95th Division on its left and the 80th 
on its right, and the tanks of the 6th Armored lending support, 
the 5th attacked on November 9, and ten days later the sup- 
posedly impregnable fortress fell to the American divisions. 

Ordered to the southern flank of the German bulge during 
the Ardennes counteroffensive, the 5th saw further bitter action 
there and helped turn back the enemy threat. Then it went back 
to its accustomed routine of taking more French cities away 
from the Germans, helped to clear Luxembourg of the enemy, 
and, as the war in Europe drew to a close, swung down into 
Czechoslovakia. On V-E Day, the 5th was at Winterburg. 

The Division that had become known along the Western 
Front for having outrun its supplies achieved a different kind 
of distinction when it helped drive the Germans out of Verdun 
and subsequently seized an enemy supply dump. There the 
Doughboys who had had too little came upon a priceless cache 
of thousands of German field jackets lined with rabbit fur, and 
Major General Stafford LeRoy Irwin, their commander, ordered 
that one be distributed to each Red Diamond soldier. For a 
while, at least, the Red Diamond men were so snugly dressed 
that the men of other units sometimes momentarily confused 
them with our Air Forces. 


6th Infantry Division 

In World War I the 6th Division was in so many engagements 
and made so many long marches about France that it was nick- 
named "The Sight-Seeing Sixth." 

The 6th in World War II did a pretty good job of upholding 
that reputation. Its six-pointed star shoulder patch has been 
seen throughout the Pacific, from Hawaii to the far reaches of 

No division had a tougher assignment in the recapture of 
the Philippines than the 6th. It landed at Lingayen Gulf, Luzon, 
on D-day, January 9, 1945, and immediately took to the hills 
in pursuit of the Japs. While most of the other invading divisions 
were working on fairly flat terrain, the 6th was in the mountains, 
hacking away at the formidable Nip positions. Not until the 
Okinawa campaign did American troops get as much artillery 
as was poured on the 6th from the Japanese mountain guns. 

But the 6th kept rolling the enemy from peak to peak. In the 
first month of the campaign the Sightseers killed 5,000 Japs, and 
during the fierce battle around Munoz they knocked out 57 Jap 
medium and light tanks and destroyed a formidable number of 
artillery pieces. General Walter Krueger, Commanding General 
of the Sixth Army, commended the Division for its magnificent 
performance in this engagement. 

Shortly after this battle the 6th's commander, Major General 
Edwin D. Patrick, was killed by mortar fire while up front with 
his troops. 


The 6th's first mission in this war was the defense of Oahu. 
The Division reached the Hawaiian Islands in 1943 and relieved 
the 27th Division of the defensive positions in the southern 
sector. Later, it took over the defense of the entire island. 

In January of 1944 the 6th set sail for Milne Bay, New 
Guinea, and five months later moved on to the Toem-Wakde 
area in Dutch New Guinea. In July the Sightseers went into 
action west of Toem and met and defeated the Japanese in the 
bloody battle of Lone Tree Hill. This victory was a major one 
because it secured the Maffin Bay area for the Americans. 

With little or no rest, the 6th went into action again. This 
time the men with the six-pointed star made a landing at Sansa- 
por on the Vogelkop Peninsula in the Netherlands East Indies. 
Striking swiftly against a surprised Japanese garrison, the 6th 
rapidly secured the Sansapor coast from Cape Weimak to the 
Mega River. The Division, in its lightning stroke at Sansapor, 
captured many prisoners. 

The 6th garrisoned this area until late in the year when it 
joined the vast armada that sailed against Luzon. During the 
Luzon campaign the men of the 6th established a Pacific record 
for continuous duty in the line, serving well over a hundred days 
before being relieved and given a rest at a back area. 


7th Infantry Division 

For the men of the 7th Infantry Division there is no such thing 
as unseasonable weather for Jap killing. They have slain the 
Nips in the sub-zero cold of the Arctic regions, and they 
chopped them down when it was hitting 125 in the shade of 
palm trees. After the war was over, they went on to police them 
in Korea. 

From Attu's bleak wastes to the lush jungles of the Pacific 
the men of the "Hourglass" Division have ranged in search of 
the enemy, and in doing so have earned two major honors. 

At Attu the 7th gained the distinction of recapturing the first 
American soil taken by the Japanese. And at Kwajalein in the 
Marshall Islands the 7th, with the 4th Marines, won the honor 
of first wresting from the Japanese ground he held prior to 
Pearl Harbor. 

The 7th, which was activated in 1940 under the command of 
then Major General Joseph W. Stilwell, started its battle against 
the Nips in May 1943, when its men hit the beaches of Attu. 
For three weeks, in weather that would have broken the spirit 
of many an Arctic explorer, the 7th was in bitter combat with 
the enemy. The batde spread into the mountains and into the 
valleys, and it was not until May 30, when the Japanese threw 
their all into a fanatical banzai attack that failed, was the battle 
for the Aleutian stronghold ended. 

Three months later elements of the 7th assaulted Kiska only 
to find that the enemy had fled a few days earlier. 


The Hourglass boys shipped from the Aleutians to Hawaii, 
where they underwent months of rigorous training in prepara- 
tion for their try at jungle fighting. Early in 1944, the 7th 
swarmed ashore at Kwajalein, in the heart of the Jap-held Mar- 
shall Islands. Six days later the Stars and Stripes was flying 
over the atoll— and the Japs had lost their first territory of the 

It was on Leyte that the men of the 7th really started killing 
Japs. On D-day, October 20, the Hourglassers hit the sand near 
the town of Dulag and found themselves opposed by one of the 
crack Japanese divisions— the 16th, perpetrators of the "Bataan 
Death March." Fighting for every foot, the 7th drove inland, 
and within four days had captured Dulag, its important airstrip, 
the San Pablo airfield, and the city of Burauen. Swinging north, 
the Hourglassers plowed through the rice paddies, waist-deep 
mud, and monsoon gales to crush Jap resistance and overrun 
Jap defenses at the key town of Dagami. 

But MacArthur gave them little rest. He turned die Division 
south and told them to eliminate all the enemy from the Leyte 
watershed as far south as Abuyog. This mission was accom- 
plished under the most adverse weather conditions. The men 
were pelted by torrential rains, blown down by winds of 
typhoon velocity, and had to fight flash floods and swollen rivers 
and streams. 

The 7th finished its chore in the Leyte campaign by landing 
on the Camotes Islands and exterminating all the Japanese on 
this group. The 7th moved 105 miles on Leyte, covered 1,950 
miles in reconnaissance, and killed 16,559 of the enemy. 

But the toughest fight for the 7th was yet to come. On Easter 
Sunday the men of the Hourglass patch landed on the west 
coast of Okinawa and started a drive across the island. There 
they met the most intense artillery fire of the Pacific war, and 
the most stubborn enemy defense. One of the bloodiest battles 
of the war saw the 7th assault Hill 178 for six days before taking 
this anchor position in the defense line. When Okinawa was 
conquered and General Stilwell came to assume command of 
the Tenth Army, he found his old division— the 7th— waiting for 
him with a combat record unsurpassed by any fighting unit in 
the Pacific. 


8th Infantry Division 

On September 18, 1944, several German pockets on the coast 
of Brittany were just about liquidated. On that day a German 
lieutenant general who had managed to sneak from Brest to the 
Crozon peninsula prudently decided to surrender to the 8th 
Infantry Division. He was brought before Brigadier General 
Charles D. W. Canham, assistant commander of the 8th, who 
stood waiting with a group of armed Infantrymen behind him. 
The haughty German looked at General Canham and said, 
"Where are your credentials?" General Canham motioned to his 
grim-faced Doughboys. "These are my credentials," he said. 

That phrase is now part of the permanent history of the 
"Golden Arrow" Division, formerly known as the "Pathfinder." 
Its three Infantry regiments are among the Army's best known. 
The 13th was activated in 1798, the 121st stems from a famous 
Georgia outfit (and fought against the 13th in the Civil War), 
and the 28th was the first American combat unit ever to set foot 
in France when, serving with the 1st Infantry Division in the 
last war, it landed at St. Nazaire in June 1917. 

When the Japs struck at Pearl Harbor, the 8th, a Regular 
Army division, was immediately assigned to patrolling the east 
coast from North Carolina to the Florida Keys. It sailed for 
Europe in December 1943, and trained with the British near 
Belfast in Northern Ireland. Landing in Normandy on the 
Fourth of July, it went into action four days later and, during 


the next ten months, was responsible for the capture of 316,000 
enemy prisoners, 250,000 of whom were seized when the Divi- 
sion made a swift dash to the Elbe River in April, establishing a 
bridgehead there and joining up with the Russian forces ad- 
vancing west along the Baltic, 

The 8th Division's first action was at the Ay River in Nor- 
mandy. It moved on to capture Rennes, and from there pro- 
ceeded to the siege of Brest, remaining close to the west coast 
of France until late in September. During this period the 3d 
Battalion of the 121st Infantry, while temporarily attached to 
the 83d Division, made a heroic stand near Dinard, where, on 
August 9, it was completely isolated for three days, but held out 
against fierce enemy attacks and saved its wounded by admin- 
istering plasma dropped by two Cub artillery planes. During 
August and September, the Golden Arrow Division took 15,000 

Turning back toward the east, the division moved into the 
Luxembourg zone of action, fought in the Hiirtgen Forest, and 
pushed its way across the Roer River backed by a heavy con- 
centration of fire from its own artillery battalions, which one 
group of Germans reported to be more devastating in their fire 
Ln anything they had experienced on the Russian front. The 
Golden Arrow's big guns poured in a 45~minute barrage of shells 
on the city of Diiren that virtually flattened the place. The 8th 
went on to cross the Ruhr and the Erft Canal, fought its way to 
Cologne, stormed the Elbe, and, as the war in Europe ended, 
was deep in Germany at Schweren. During its ten months of 
operations in Europe, the Division was out of combat for just 
ten days. 


9th Infantry Division 

Stars and Stripes, which ought to know, called it "The Varsity." 
A newspaper editorial at home dubbed it "Hitlers Nemesis." 
Nobody knows what Hitler called it, but his term probably 
wasn't affectionate. 

The 9th Infantry Division has a record few outfits can sur- 
pass, Its 22,724 casualties attest to the tough fighting it saw. 
The 17 generals who have graduated from its ranks since its 
activation (including its first commander, General Jacob L. 
Devers, now chief of all the Army Ground Forces) attest to its 
leadership. And the battles it has won attest to its high combat 

Port Lyautey, Algiers, El Guettar, Bizerte, Randazzo, 
Quinneville, Cherbourg, the Falaise Gap, Remagen, the Ruhr 
Pocket, the Harz Mountains— these are only a few of the major 
scenes of action for the veteran 9th. 

The red-white-and-blue octofoil— the fifteenth century her- 
aldic symbol for the ninth son-has been borne through Algeria, 
Tunisia, French Morocco, Sicily, England, France, Belgium, 
Holland, Germany, and Norway— and the men who now wear it 
are on permanent occupation duty in Germany. 

Their long trip to victory began on November 8, 1942, when 
elements of the 9th Division, as parts of two separate task forces, 
stormed ashore at Algiers, and at Port Lyautey and Sojro. For a 
while two of the 9th*s regimental combat teams guarded the * 


Spanish Moroccan border, and were reviewed by President 
Roosevelt at the time of the Casablanca Conference. 

In Tunisia, during the winter and early spring of 1943, the 
9th made a 900-mile forced march to Kasserine and fought at 
Sened and Maknassy, and on May 7, tank destroyers attached to 
the Division were the first Allied troops into Bizerte, last Ger- 
man stronghold in Africa. Moving on into Sicily, the 9th landed 
at Palermo and added the key city of Randazzo to its growing 
list of conquests. 

The 9th left Sicily on November 8, 1943, first anniversary of 
its African invasion. It sailed to England to train for the invasion 
of France, and landed in Normandy on D-day plus 4. Spear- 
headed by the 39th Infantry, with its now famous slogan of 
"Anything, Anywhere, Any Time, Bar Nothing," the 9th Divi- 
sion marched to Quinneville, pushed on to Barneville, cut the 
Cotentin Peninsula, and moved on to Cherbourg, where it cap- 
tured the German commander of the seaport garrison. It was 
one of the divisions that led the breakthrough out of St.L6, it 
fought at Chateau-Thierry and, on September 2, it began the 
liberation of Belgium. 

By September 5, the 9th had crossed the Meuse River, near 
Dinant, and eight days later it had entered Germany, south of 
Rotgen. It fought its way through Saarlautern, street by street 
and house by house, and as the winter snows covered the battle- 
field, it battled south of Aachen. 

In February, the 9th relieved the 99th at Monschau, moved 
northeast, and took Einruhr, two miles from the vital Roer River 
dam, followed by Wascheid and Gemiind. It helped the 1st 
Division mop up at Bonn, and, late in March, was one of the 
first outfits to battle at the Remagen bridgehead. A month later, 
it cut the Cologne-Frankfurt highway, captured the ancient 
walled city of Ziilpich ( Clovis had laid siege to it as far back as 
a.d. 496) , and took on the job of reducing the Ruhr Pocket. Not 
only did the 9th keep the Germans from breaking out of there, 
but at Schmallenberg, Hitler's Nemeses captured themselves a 
fine German footwear factory and were issued an unprece- 
dentedly large number of new shoes. 

Except for the 47th Infantry, which was detached at the end 
of the war to travel briefly to Norway, the rest of the 9th spent 


the closing days of the struggle cleaning up that pocket. The 
Division took Mechede and Siedlinghausen, and liberated 900 
slave laborers from five countries imprisoned at Sinn, on the 
Dill River. 

Ernie Pyle once said, "The 9th is good." He knew what he 
was talking about. 


10th Mountain Division 

When the all-out drive to clear the German forces from Italy 
began early in 1945, Lieutenant General Lucian K. Truscott, 
commanding general of the Fifth Army, chose as the spearhead 
of that push the 10th Mountain Division. It was the sort of 
break the men of the Army's only mountain division had been 
waiting for, and their method of waging warfare on the rugged 
Italian heights more than justified the General's faith in them. 

The 10th had been in Italy less than a month before it was 
in the line in one of the toughest sectors of the Fifth Army front. 
It was given the task of dislodging the crack German mountain 
troops from the heights of Mount Belvedere. It was country 
which a St.Bernard would think twice before traversing, but it 
didn't bother the hardy men of the 10th, who call themselves the 
"Mountaineers." For years they had trained in sub-zero weather, 
and they were chiefly men who had been battling the elements 
all their lives. The Doughboys who fought through the snowy 
passes and over the gale-swept peaks were famous American 
skiers, climbers, forest rangers, park and wild-life service men. 

After chasing the Germans from the grim heights of Belve- 
dere, the Mountaineers of the 10th— an admiring high com- 
mander called them the "Cat's Whiskers"-piled on the pressure 
and broke through the stubborn German defense lines in the 
Apennine Mountains near Bologna. Fighting in the clouds, the 
10th is credited with having cleared the last of the mountain 


barriers in Italy and paved the way for armored elements of the 
Fifth Army to chase the Germans northward in the Po Valley. 

In the relatively short time the 10th was in action it estab- 
lished a reputation through the Fifth Army as an outfit which 
could scale the heights and stay on top. Once the outfit gained a 
height it held it. Not once did it yield a peak it had secured. 

The Division had many individual heroes. 

One was Sergeant Torger Tokle, world champion ski jumper, 
who was killed in action in March 1945. A buddy of his, telling 
of Tokle's death, said that the ski champ had died "fighting a 
one-man campaign to repay the Nazis for the hardship and in- 
dignities visited on his family and former countrymen." Tokle's 
family had been caught in Norway by the German invasion. 

Another was Colonel William O. Darby, famous organizer 
of The Rangers, who was killed on May 1, just before the end of 
hostilities, while serving as assistant commander of the 10th. 

The division was activated at Camp Hale, Colorado, July 
1943, and at that time was known as the 10th Division (Light). 
It was not officially designated as the 10th Mountain Division 
until more than a year later. 

Despite the activation date, the Division's origin dates back 
to small units which had been in training since 1921, during a 
period when the Army was experimenting with outfits which 
would be especially trained to fight in the snow and moun- 
tainous terrain. These units were usually composed of volun- 
teers from already activated divisions. 

During a training period near the Continental Divide, a 
pilot, bringing in his bomber to a Colorado airport after dark, 
reported by radio: "No. 15 to Pueblo. No. 15 to Pueblo. Coming 
in at eight thousand feet. Gliding. Gliding. Gliding." He flipped 
over the switch to receive, but instead of the control tower he 
picked up a tired and slightly bored voice with a New England 
twang. "Sugar Loaf Mountain Patrol to 10th Division Head- 
quarters," the voice said. "Coming in at twelve thousand feet. 
Coming in at twelve thousand feet. Walking. Walking. 

The shoulder patch of the 10th has a blue background, the 
outline of a powder keg, and over this crossed bayonets. Above 
the patch the men wear a tab bearing the word "Mountain." 


11th Airborne Division 

"Tokyo Rose" was at her untruthful best on her broadcast of 
December 7, 1944, third anniversary of the sneak attack on 
Pearl Harbor. 

In delighted tones she told of how invincible Japanese para- 
troopers, the evening before, had dropped on a vital airstrip in 
Leyte to destroy scores of planes, kill hundreds of Yanks, and 
capture the airfield. 

No one laughed any harder at this broadcast than did the 
tough hombres of the 11th Airborne Division. They happened 
to be on hand when the Nips tumbled out in the dusk, and the 
ensuing battle was the first paratrooper-uemw-paratrooper bat- 
tle of the Pacific. It was a wild fight, there in the coconut groves 
bordering the strip. Every man for himself. But in the morning 
the area was stippled with dead Japs, and by noon "The 
Angels," as the 11th troopers are known to their commanding 
officer, had tracked down and destroyed every Jap who landed. 

The Japs brought with them a flag, later seized in the battle, 
with the message "Exert your utmost for your country" em- 
broidered on it. It was signed by Lieutenant General Kyoji 
Tominaga, Imperial War Minister. The flag now hangs at West 

The 11th landed on Leyte, 40 miles south of the capital city 
of Tacloban, on November 18, 1944, and the fight on that island 
is regarded by its officers and men as the toughest of all the 


Division's fights. Troopers who later waged bloody battles for 
Nichols Field and Fort McKinley, and who used bayonets to 
assault hill positions and rock caves on Luzon, claim that Leyte 
was the worst. 

The men fought everything on Leyte. Inexperience, rain, 
mud, howling winds, dense jungles, rugged mountains, and a 
fanatical enemy. But they never took a backward step during 
the campaign, despite scores of suicidal banzai attacks by the 

In general, the llth's mission on Leyte was to clear the 
Ormoc-Burauen supply trail, the Japs' lifeline, and to squeeze 
the enemy against the 7th, 77th, and 96th Division troops on 
the north and northwest coasts. They accomplished this, and 
much of their movement was done at night. For example, when 
the 511th Parachute Infantry was given the job of pushing 
through the Anas Pass, the attack was launched in the dead of 
night. The Japs, sound asleep in their bivouac, apparently se- 
cure in their belief that Americans did not attack at night, were 
wiped out before they could throw together a defense. 

"The Angels" killed 5,700 Japs on Leyte by actual count, and 
no one will ever know how many more were blown to bits by 

The 11th Airborne made a landing on Luzon, 60 road miles 
from Manila. Half an hour after reaching the beach the 11th 
had cleaned out the last Jap beachhead defender, and one of 
its regiments was racing down Highway 17 to Manila. It moved 
so swiftly that the Japs, who had mined the bridges, didn't 
have time to blow them. It was not until the troopers reached 
the foothills of Tageytay Ridge that the fleeing Japs made a 
stand. From that point on it was tough going. Mountain guns 
and mortars bracketed the highway. The Japs were looking 
down the troopers' throats, but they pushed on up the ever- 
ascending Highway 17. 

On February 3 the 511th made its first combat jump— the 
third parachute combat jump in the Pacific war. The jump 
brought about the capture of the Ridge, and "The Angels" 
headed for Manila, 30 miles away. There was a stiff battle at 
Imus, ten miles from the Manila suburbs. The troopers broke 
through the Genko Line, and moved toward Nichols Field. The 


battle for the airstrip was one of the meanest of the Luzon cam- 
paign. Pillboxes dotted the installation, protecting all roads 
leading to the field. Dual-purpose ack-ack guns abounded. 
From the outer rim of the field's defenses the Japs poured in fire 
from five-inch naval guns. Following the fall of Nichols Field, 
the troopers aided in the capture of Fort McKmlcy. 

Of all the llth's operations on Luzon, the most daring was 
the hit-and-run raid on the Japanese internment camp at Los 
Bafios, where more than 2,000 American and European na- 
tionals were held. In a combined paratroop and amphibious 
landing, the troopers struck 25 miles behind the enemy lines to 
overwhelm the Jap garrison. The Americans sustained only one 
casualty— a slight shoulder wound suffered by a parachutist. 

Oh, yes— one other thing about the men whom Tokyo Rose 
reported "killed" at the Leyte airstrip. Some of them were 
among the members of the 11th Airborne who, the following 
August, achieved the honor of being the first American soldiers 
to set foot on captive Japan, and who proudly formed the guard 
of honor as General MacArthur arrived to inspect his first occu- 
pation headquarters in Yokohama. 


13th Airborne 7 Division 

The shoulder patch of the 13th Airborne Division is a winged 
unicorn on a blue shield, and it is a happy choice. Tradition 
associates the unicorn with qualities of courage and strength, 
and the elements of the 13th which fought in Europe against 
the Nazis, displayed these qualities in abundance. 

In World War I the 13th was an infantry division, and was 
prepared to sail overseas when the Armistice stopped all troop 
movements. In World War II the Division was activated at 
Fort Bragg, North Carolina, and later was transferred to Camp 
Mackall, North Carolina, The Airborne Center, 

Although the 13th was assigned to the First Allied Airborne 
Army, it was not committed to action in the European conflict. 
The 517th Parachute Infantry Regiment, however, which was 
joined to the division overseas, had had previous combat service. 
Operating as a combat team, the 517th fought in Italy in Sep- 
tember 1944, and then in southern France. 

In the Ardennes campaign, when the threat of the German 
breakthrough was at its height, the 517th fought with outstand- 
ing valor. The 1st Battalion of this rugged outfit was attached 
to the 3d Armored Division and went into combat around Soy 
and Hotten. 

The 2nd Battalion, and that part of the 3d Battalion not 
guarding XVIII Airborne Corps Headquarters, was attached to 
the 30th Infantry Division. For their action in this bitter cam- 


paign the team was commended by the late Major General 
Maurice Rose, commanding general of the 3d Armored Division. 

After V-E Day, the 13th was stationed in France, at Vitry-le- 
Frangois. Later it returned to the United States and was about 
to embark for service in the Pacific when the war ended. 


17th Airborne Division 

No Amebican division ever made a more spectacular or haz- 
ardous entrance into combat than did the 17th Airborne. 

Comfortably billeted in England one day, 17th troopers 
were in the battle zone near Reims the next, ready to throw 
their power against Rundstedt's best in the Battle of the Bulge. 

With Rundstedt's troops grinding forward, the Allies needed 
all men available. Under cover of darkness, and in treacherous 
flying weather, the 17th boarded transport planes and was 
flown to the battle zone. 

The men who wear the grasping eagle's claws against a 
black background on their shoulder patch were given a terrific 
assignment their first time out. They relieved the 11th Armored 
Division, south of historic Bastogne, and went into the line 
between the 101st Airborne Division and the 87th Infantry 

Their mission was not to hold, but to attack. And attack they 
did. Scorning a fanatical foe, swirling snow, roadblocks, and 
thousands of mines, the 17th drove forward. The troopers 
slashed into Cetturu, and on to Bouitet, Steinbach, and Limerle, 
cutting vital highways. 

By the end of a month of bitter fighting the men of the 17th 
broke into Germany near the town of Wiltz. 

In February the Division was engaged along the Our River, 
its job being to hold a bridgehead south of Cleveaux, Luxem- 


bourg. in a pre-dawn attack it was one of the units which 
crossed the Luxembourg-German border along a 22-mile front, 
and pushed into the Siegfried Line. The men forded the Our 
River just east of Clerf. Fighting alongside the 6th Armored 
Division, the 17th captured Dasburg and established a supply 
line across the Our River. 

In March came one of the most successful airborne opera- 
tions of the war, a feat that helped set up the final drive to 
Berlin and Nazi capitulation. As part of the First Allied Air- 
borne Army, the 17th helped in the crossing of the Rhine just 
below the Netherlands border. In dropping across the Rhine the 
division employed 3,000 gliders without the loss of one due to 
enemy action. The landing of troops in this dramatic thrust by 
the First Allied Airborne Army began northeast of Wessel, 
Germany, and the big march was on. Dorsten fell, then Haltern, 
followed by Diilmen, Appelhausen, and Miinster. 


24th Infantry Division 

The 24th Division doesn't forget. 

It was on Oahu when the Japs threw their sneak punch at 
Pearl Harbor, and the men of the Victory Division have been 
paying back the Nips ever since. 

Thus far the 24th has hit the Nips thirteen times— at Hol- 
landia, Biak, Fanaon, Leyte, Mindoro, Marinduque, Subic Bay, 
Fort McKinley, Lubang, Romblon, Simara, Verde, and Corregi- 
dor. Now it is in Japan itself. 

The 24th started its slaughter of the Japs in April of 1944 
when, in what has been called the most brilliantly conceived 
and executed tactical maneuver of the Pacific war, it landed in 
New Guinea for the Tanahmerah-Hollandia operation. In four 
days the Division had wrested the vital Hollandia airdrome 
from the enemy, and this was accomplished with only 52 battle 
casualties. By June 6, the Victory men had killed 1,777 Japs and 
taken 502 prisoners, and had lost a total of only 43 men killed 
and 70 wounded. Elements of the 24th then went to Biak and 
aided the 41st Division in capturing Sorido and Boroke air- 

But it was on Leyte, where the backbone of the Japanese 
defense of the Philippines was broken, that the 24th proved it- 
self one of the great fighting outfits of the war. The men came 
in on Red Beach, and it was an inferno. Jap mountain guns 
flayed the landing boats. Zekes and Bettys sprayed the beach. 


The dunes were raked by enemy mortar, machine-gun and 
small-arms fire. But the 24th landed and kept moving. The 19th 
Infantry Regiment drove up vital Hill 522 before the Japs, who 
had abandoned this commanding bit of ground during the naval 
bombardment, could reoccupy their positions. The 34th In- 
fantry Regiment pushed straight inland, repulsing counterattack , 
after counterattack. 

The 24th bore the brunt of the fighting on Leyte. It fought 
the Jap at the crossroads, in the villages, in the rice paddies, 
along the banks of dirty streams, stalked him through die hills, 
and rooted him out of his dugouts. For 78 consecutive days, a 
Pacific record at the time, the men of the 24th were in constant 
combat, and they killed a counted 7,179 Japs. 

The 2nd Battalion of the 19th Infantry is known in the 
Pacific as the "Lost Battalion" of World War II. In a wide flank- 
ing movement designed to put a strangle hold on the Japanese 
"lifeline" road at Ormoc, the 2nd Battalion remained 13 days 
behind Japanese lines. Cut off from supplies and unable to 
evacuate its wounded, the battalion held, despite daily banzai 
attacks by the desperate Japanese. 

But there was no rest for the weary after Leyte. 

Elements of the 24th were pulled directly from the line and 
went to Mindoro as part of a task force, while other elements 
landed and secured Marinduque. 

With only a short rest, the fighting 34th Infantry was at- 
tached to the 38th Division to spearhead the landing of that 
outfit above Subic Bay at the tip of Bataan Peninsula. The 34th 
led this assault all the way to Zig~Zag Pass, that treacherous 
divide where the Japanese had prepared a main line of defense. 
The 34th broke through the pass. 

One battalion of the 34th was given the honor of making the 
amphibious assault on Corregidor. It hit the beach on February 
16 while the 503d Parachute Infantry landed on Topside. For 
nine days the men stood up against— and beat back— fanatical 
Nip attacks. 

Later the Victory men were given the job of mopping-up 
operations on Verde, Lubang, Romblon and Simara Islands. 
They didn't miss a Jap. The 24th really remembered Pearl 


25th Infantry Division 

No other division in the history of the United States Army was 
ever so quickly in combat after it was formed as the 25th, or 
"Tropic Lightning" Division. 

It was but a baby of two months, stationed on Oahu in the 
Hawaiian Islands, when the Japanese attacked Pearl Harbor. 

Activated from elements of the Hawaiian Division's Regular 
Army troops in October 1941, it was burying its dead on De- 
cember 7. 

All through 1942, the 25th fretted for a chance to gain re- 
venge against the Japanese. The chance came early in 1943 
when the men who wear the Spanish red taro leaf, with a light- 
ning flash on it, cleared for Guadalcanal. The infantrymen went 
ashore on the open beaches west of the Tenaru River. Their 
mission was to drive inland 14 miles, envelop the Jap south 
flank, reduce strong enemy positions on Mt. Austen, and seize 
the corps objective 3,000 yards to the west. 

The rough and broken terrain made supply, communica- 
tion, and evacuation of wounded extremely difficult. Lack of 
suitable maps was another handicap. And the Japs were there 
in abundance. 

But the "Tropic Lightnings" slashed forward, and by the 
15th of January the Japanese were bottled into three main 
pockets. The 27th Infantry Regiment fought the Japs in the 
open. The 35th Infantry fought them in the thick jungles of 


Mt. Austen. Some of the meanest fighting of the Pacific war was 
done by the 25th in clearing the stubborn Japs from these 
pockets. Early in February, the 161st Infantry made a junction 
with other division units near Cape Esperance, and the Nip- 
ponese occupation of Guadalcanal was over. 

After five months of training and conditioning on the 'Canal, 
the 25th joined in the New Georgia fight for the vital Munda 
airfield. The 161st was the first to reach New Georgia, and so 
fierce was the opposition, so miserable the weather, that the 
161st required nine days to fight its way to its line of departure. 
By this time the 27th Infantry had joined the battle, and, in a 
historic 19-day march through the jungles and mud, secured the 
important harbor of Bairoko. Following these campaigns, the 
men of the 25th cleaned up Arundel Island, and fought a bloody 
battle to secure Vella Lavella Island. 

The Division, after eleven months in the jungles, was sent 
to New Zealand for a well deserved rest. From there it went to 
New Caledonia, where replacement brought it back to strength. 

The "Tropic Lightnings" landed on Luzon two days after 
the initial assault, and went into the line a week later. Attacking 
between the 6th and 43d Infantry Divisions, they captured 
Binalonan and cut Highway 8. The Japs counterattacked furi- 
ously at Binalonan, but the 25th held, capturing a tremendous 
ammunition dump. 

The 25th fought a savage five-day battle for the town of San 
Manuel. The Japs had dug in their tanks, and every building 
was a fortress. The Nip force consisted of the bulk of their 2nd 
Armored Division. The 25th 's brilliant assistant division com- 
mander, Brigadier General James Leo Dalton, II, was killed in 
the battle for San Manuel. 

During all this action the 25th was holding the left flank and 
engaging the might of the Jap armor, while other American units 
were dashing toward Manila. 

In the Luzon fight the 25th knocked out more than 250 Jap- 
anese tanks, mostly with infantry assault weapons, and killed 
more than 6,500 Nips. 


26th Infantry Division 

On March 20, 1945, one phase of the European War ended 
and another was ready to begin. When, on that day, the Third 
and Seventh Armies made a junction 12 miles west of Kaisers- 
lautern, in southwestern Germany, they sealed the fate of some 
70,000 Germans trapped in the Saar Palatinate, and virtually 
eliminated the last enemy resistance west of the Rhine. 

The 6th Armored Division represented the Seventh Army in 
that significant meeting. And the Third Army colors were car- 
ried by the "Yankees" of the 26th Division. 

There are plenty of soldiers from all over the country, in- 
cluding the deep South, who now proudly wear the "YD" mono- 
gram on their shoulders, but the original Yankees were Massa- 
chusetts National Guardsmen who went on active duty nearly a 
year before Pearl Harbor. 

In World War I, the 26th led all other Guard divisions in 
numbers of combat decorations, but in World War II the Divi- 
sion thought for a while that it might not earn any at all. It 
wasn't until after nearly four years of training that the Yankees 
had a chance to play for keeps. 

On September 29, 1944, the 26th went into action on the 
Third Army front southeast of Verdun, taking up positions 
between the Meuse and the Moselle Rivers. Within a month, 
the outfit had seen plenty of action east of St.Mihiel, near 


Nancy, and north of the Foret de Parroy. Till early November, 
however, the 26th had primarily defensive missions. 

But on November 8th came the order the Yankees had been 
waiting for— "Attackl" The Third Army set out to reduce the 
fortress of Metz. The 26th didn't go after that city, Instead, 
operating on the southern flank of the assault forces, it advanced 
50 miles in a month, crossing the Seille and Saar Rivers, pushing 
through rugged enemy resistance, and fighting under weather 
conditions so adverse that its supporting armor and other forces 
couldn't maneuver effectively, compelling the 26th's Infantry- 
men to fight on their own. 

They did well, taking Morville, by-passing Dieuze to go 
after Sarreguemines, and, on December 12, plunged into Ger- 
many itself at the Blies River. 

On December 14, the Division returned to Metz, and a few 
days later rushed to the aid of the First Army in the Ardennes 
sector. On Christmas Day, the 26th celebrated its arrival at 
the scene of trouble by launching an attack on the south side 
of the German salient extending into Belgium. Many units in 
that area were trying desperately to break through the German 
lines and relieve the 101st Airborne, making its stand at Bas- 
togne. One of the first outfits to reach the beleaguered forces 
was the 26th, Santa Claus himself couldn't have been better 


27th Infantry Division 

Before Pearl Harbor, the 27th Division was commonly 
known as the "Empire" or "New York" Division, having been 
composed originally of National Guardsmen from the Empire 
State. But within a few months of the Japs' attack in Hawaii, 
the 27th began to travel, and it moved so much during the 
next three years that now many of its soldiers call themselves 
"The Galla Vanters." Some liked the name "Tokyo Express," 
too, and lived up to it when they were among the first Americans 
to occupy Japan. 

After patrolling the west coast of the United States for a 
few weeks immediately after war was declared, the 27th sailed 
for Hawaii and manned defensive positions at Kauai, Maui, and 
Hawaii while training for action farther to the west. 

In November 1943 the Division earned its first battle stars. 
An invasion convoy steamed into the Gilbert Islands, and, while 
the 2nd Marine Division stormed into the hell of Tarawa, the 
27th's 165th Infantry Regiment, with attached troops from 
other units, went ashore at nearby Makin. It was a quick fight 
—three days long— but it took its toll of the Galla Vanters, 
including the regimental commander of the 165th. This was 
the outfit that in World War I, as part of the 42nd Division, had 
earned immortal fame as the Fighting 69th. 

World War I affected the modern 27th in one other way, 
too. The Division's shoulder patch combines a monogram of 


"NT' with the stars of the constellation Orion— not because of 
any nights spent in the field looking at the skies, but because 
in 1918 the 27th decided to pay permanent tribute to its leader, 
Major General John F. O'Ryan. 

After Makin, the 106th Infantry took the small island of 
Majuro without opposition, and then on to join in the fighting 
for Eniwetok, in the Marshall Islands, the following February. 

The Division fought as an entire unit for the first time at 
Saipan. Going in on June 17, K)44, two days after D-day, the 
27th, fighting alongside two Marine divisions, found itself up 
against fanatical Jap garrisons entrenched in caves and concrete 
fortifications. It was a tough campaign all the way through, but 
it was toughest on July 7. 


Shrieking their suicidal battle cry, the Japs poured out of 
their caves and into the 27th's positions in a nightmare of 
close-in combat. For forty-eight hours the desperate fighting 
went on, with battle lines virtually indistinguishable as units 
of both sides mingled in deadly embrace. Well over 2,000 
Japanese corpses were counted when the banzai charge was 
finally stopped, and there were many tales of individual heroism 
and initiative among the men of the 27th-like the story of the 
Medics who, cut off from their normal supply of bandages, 
improvised dressings out of rifle cleaning materials and captured 
Japanese flags. 

Next stop: Okinawa. 

Nowhere in the Pacific had the fighting been worse. Dug 
in at defensive positions of their own choosing, the Japs re- 
sisted as only they can. The 27th fought grimly along Kakazu 
Ridge— "the area of greatest enemy activity," a corps commander 
said-and on April 19, after a 3,000-yard advance, took the 
important Machinato airfield. Before he was killed, Lieutenant 
General Simon Bolivar Buckner of the Tenth Army said of the 
27th, "They have paid heavily and they have shown lots of guts." 


28th Infantry Division 

"Roll On" has long been the slogan of Pennsylvania's "Key- 
stone" Division, but for a while in December 1944 it looked 
as if "Hold On" would be more appropriate. At that time, the 
28th, with five months of fighting in France, Belgium, Luxem- 
bourg, and Germany already behind it, was deployed along a 
25-mile stretch of the Our River, from northeastern Luxem- 
bourg to Wallenstein, Germany. And at that time Rundstedt 
launched the full fury of his counteroffensive against the Key- 
stone's lines. On the first day, five crack German divisions flung 
themselves over the Our, and within a few days the 28th was 
single-handedly fighting no less than nine enemy divisions. It 
held on, though, and one correspondent in the area later called 
its stand "one of the greatest feats in the history of the American 

The 28th, whose nickname is taken from its parent state, 
had an impressive record in World War I, too. Noted for its 
fighting in the Meuse-Argonne area, perhaps its greatest single 
feat was the rescue of the famous Lost Battalion of the 77th 
Division in the Argonne, Twenty-six years later, the 28th came 
back to France after having sailed for Europe in October 1943, 
and having trained in Wales and England for the invasion of the 

The Keystone Division struck its first blow at the enemy on 
July 22, 1944, shortly after its landing in Normandy. The fury 


of its assaults on enemy positions led the Germans, who felt 
that "Keystone" was an inadequately savage description of the 
28th's red shoulder patch, to call the division the "Bloody 
Bucket" outfit. After worming its way laboriously through the 
hedgerows, the Division broke loose and rolled through France, 
overrunning Verneuil, Breteuil, Damville, and other cities. It 
mopped up large numbers of Germans trapped west of the 
Seine River by the swift Allied advance, and, on August 29 
entered Paris, a few days after the city's liberation. 

On September 6, the 28th crossed the Meuse, scene of much 
of its fighting in World War I, went on over the Belgian border, 
and then fanned out into Luxembourg, averaging 17 miles a 
day. In mid-September, it became the first division to enter Ger- 
many in strength. In November, the 28th cleaned up the Hiirt- 
gen Forest, and at the end of the month moved back to the front 
lines and took up positions along the Our. It was then that it 
was hit by the Ardennes offensive. Badly battered, the 28th 
nevertheless kept on fighting determinedly until it was relieved, 
by which time it had held on so long that the timetable for the 
enemy breakthrough had been irreparably upset. 

After resting and reorganizing, the Division went back to 
the fight early in 1945. The Keystoners smashed across the 
Rhine-Rhone Canal and, by February, had taken up positions 
along the Olef River, near Schleiden. In March, the 28th moved 
on to the Ahr River, and two months later, as the fight ended, 
had penetrated into Kaiserslautern. 


29th Infantry Division 

The Major had wanted to lead his men into St.L6, and his men 
saw that his wish came true. Killed just outside the city while 
the 29th was battering at its suburbs, the Major had distin- 
guished himself for gallantry in the fierce attack on that key 
spot. And when, on July 18, the "Blue and Gray" Division 
finally took St.Lo, its victorious columns included a lone ambu- 
lance—containing the flag-draped body of the Major of St.Lo. 

The 29th was a veteran division by July 18. For that matter, 
it was a veteran division on D-plus-1. The day before, June 6, 
1944, it had assaulted the German shore positions at Omaha 
Beach along with the 1st Infantry Division. It had pushed its 
way inland through minefields and pillboxes and every kind of 
fortification the Nazis could devise. Its men had loudly an- 
swered their own battle cry "29th, Let's go!" 

Organized for World War I of National Guardsmen from 
New Jersey, Delaware, Virginia, Maryland, and the District of 
Columbia, the 29th had selected as its shoulder patch the blue 
and gray colors of the rival armies in the Civil War— symboliz- 
ing the unity of the formerly embattled states. The colors were 
combined in a monad, Korean symbol for eternal life. The Blue 
and Gray Division played a prominent part in World War I, 
suffering more than 6,000 casualties, and in this war it has more 
than lived up to that record. 


By V-E Day its casualties numbered more than 20,000. 

Omaha Beach led to Isigny, and Isigny to St.Ld, and St.L6 
to Vire, and Vire to Brest. There the 29th, with the 2nd and 8th 
Infantry Divisions, laid siege to the German garrison, which 
finally capitulated on September 18. Swinging east, the Blue 
and Gray men were ordered to move on the Roer River. They 
launched an attack northeast of Aachen in November, and, 
brushing aside enemy defense, had soon taken Siersdorf, Stet- 
terich, Durboslar, and Bettendorf. The stiff est opposition was 
at the Jiilich Sportspalats and at Hasenfeld Gut, but the 29th 
took both objectives and, by early December, held the west 
bank of the Roer. 

Nest objective was the Rhine. The battle-hardened Division 
set off in February, and in five days had captured 48 occupied 
places. It swept across the Cologne plain, and fought its way 
into Julich, Broich, Immerath, Otzenrath, and Titz. 

But these were all smallish places. The 29th had its eye on 
something bigger. On March 1, it marched victoriously into 
M^richen-Gladbach, textile center of Germany and up to then 
the largest German city taken by the Allies. Then the 116th 
Infantry Regiment, which had been cited for its D-day actions, 
was assigned to mopping up in the Ruhr area, and the 175th 
Infantry Regiment, the 1st Battalion of which had been cited 
at St.L6, moved into the Klotze Forest. By the war's end, the 
29th Division had joined hands with the Russians at the Elbe 
and was deep in Germany. Later, it was revealed to be part of 
our Army of Occupation, with its headquarters at the port of 


30th Infantry Division 

The 30th Division got to France a little later than some, but 
once it started moving it made up for lost time. Joining the 
Allied assault on the Germans on June 15, 1945, the Division 
crossed the Vire River and headed for St.Ld, and was soon 
spearheading the breakthrough out of the hedgerows of Nor- 
mandy onto the plains of central France. By August 6 the "Old 
Hickory" Division— nicknamed after the World War I National 
Guardsmen from the Carolinas, Georgia, and Tennessee, An- 
drew Jackson's old stamping grounds— had advanced to Mortain 
and relieved the 1st Infantry Division there. 

Everything seemed under control when the Division was 
suddenly hit by five German armored divisions, hoping to push 
through to the sea at Avranches and thus split the American 
First and Third Armies. The brunt of the assault landed on the 
1st Battalion of the 117th Infantry Regiment, which threw 
every available man into the line, stemmed the attack, and was 
cited for its gallantry. One group of Old Hickory men, cut off 
for five and a half days, replied to a German surrender demand 
by saying, "Go to hell! We wouldn't surrender even if our last 
round of ammo were fired and our last bayonet were broken 
off in a Boche belly." The Germans never threatened to touch 
the sea again. 

The Old Hickory didn't rest long there. It took Reuilly, 
crossed the Seine, and by September, had begun an offensive 


that carried through to Tournai and Brussels and gave it the dis- 
tinction of being one of the first American divisions to enter 
Belgium and Holland. Traveling to Belgium, the 30th covered 
180 miles in 72 hours. After crossing the Albert Canal and the 
Meuse, capturing the fortress of Eben Emael, and liberating 
Maastricht, the 30th got ready to assault the Siegfried Line. 

The attack began on October 2. The next day the Old 
Hickory men, with only their own artillery and basic weapons 
in support, had broken through the massive fortifications of the 
line at Palemberg and Rimburg. By October 16 the 30th had 
made contact with the 1st Infantry Division, crashing the line 
in another sector, and the two outfits had encircled Aachen. 
The 30th fought on into the defensive crust of Germany, and 
abandoned its forward movement only when the Rundstedt 
counteroffensive made it necessary for the Division to swing 
back to the Malmedy-Stavelot sector of the Ardennes and join 
the fight there. 

The 30th took care of its share of the counterattack so effec- 
tively that the Germans, convinced that no run-of-the-mill divi- 
sion could have treated them the way it did, began calling it 
"Roosevelt's SS Troops." 

When the Allies began rolling again, the Old Hickory re- 
verted to its role of pacemaker. It crossed the Roer, raced for 
the Rhine, was one of the first outfits to break out from the 
bridgehead there, and helped to bottle up thousands of enemy 
soldiers in the Ruhr pocket. By the end of the war, it was sta- 
tioned at Saalfeld, in Germany. 

The oval shoulder patch of the 30th has a story behind it. Its 
original design embodied an "OH" and the Roman numeral 
"XXX." In 1918, when the 30th smashed the Hindenburg Line 
and earned 12 out of 78 Medals of Honor and more than half 
of all British decorations awarded to Americans, the first ship- 
ment of manufactured insignia arrived in Europe for the Old 
Hickory men to wear. A bunch of Doughboys, receiving them 
with no explanation of the symbolism, sewed them on sideways. 
After a while the Division got used to that, and for a long time 
the 30th considered it right to wear its patch wrong. Finally, in 
World War II, the Old Hickory men turned their patch back 
up on end. 


31st Infantry Division 

In unity there is strength. 

No better example of the truth of this maxim could be found 
than in the fighting record of the 31st Infantry Division. 

The "Dixie" Division originally was composed of men from 
three "Deep South" states, but when it went into battle in the 
Pacific there were just as many "damyankees" as "Johnny Rebs" 
in its ranks. And, when it hit the beaches of Morotai to open the 
drive that later led to the liberation of the Philippines, its 
Doughboys were alternately whistling "Dixie" and "Marching 
Through Georgia." 

Forgotten was the War Between the States, and finished 
were the fist fights over the relative merits of Grant and Lee, 
Sherman and Stonewall Jackson. The Division had poured it on 
the Japanese from New Guinea to Mindanao, with a Blue and 
Gray cooperation that had made it a scourge to the Nips. 

The 31st wasted little time overseas before getting into com- 
bat. After a brief training period in the bush of Oro Bay, New 
Guinea, the 31st's fighting regiments moved into action. One 
combat team, the 124th, went to Aitape, and the other two, the 
155th and 167th, to Wakde-Sarmi. The 124th caught a heavy 
assignment for its first action. In the bloody fighting along the 
Drimumor River, the 124th killed more than 3,000 of the enemy 
and played a major part in breaking the back of the by-passed 
Japanese Eighteenth Army. Fighting was much lighter at 


Wakde-Sarmi, but the 155th and 167th accounted for more 
than 1,000 Japs while on the Maffin Bay perimeter „ which 
guarded a Fifth Air Force airstrip. 

In September 1944 the Dixie Division sailed from Maffin 
Bay for the reconquest of Morotai, and on the 15th of the 
month hit the beaches of this Dutch island, less than 350 miles 
from the Philippines. 

Despite a treacherous landing beach, on which even bull- 
dozers dropped from sight in muck, the Doughs of the Dixie 
quickly secured a beachhead and by noon of D-day had seized 
Pitoe Airdrome. Morotai gave our forces control of the Halma- 
hera Sea and cut off 20,000 Jap troops on the island of Hal- 

For seven months, while Mindanao was by-passed in favor 
of the Leyte operation, and, later, Luzon, the 31st maintained 
the perimeter defense for the Thirteenth Air Force. Companies 
lived on outposts for weeks at a time, supplied by barge and 
plane; men on the "line" spent their nights on guard in pillboxes; 
patrols poked continuously into the mountainous jungle in quest 
of Japs driven to the interior. Several thousand Nips were 
killed on the island during the seven months, ferreted out by 
ones, twos, and small forces. 

On Mindanao, the 31st expected to fight in the open country, 
but the Dixiemen found the Sayre Highway no open road. The 
Doughs fought the Japs in neck-high cogon grass, and in deep 
forests. The Division's bloodiest fight on Mindanao came when 
they met the Japs below the Maramag No. 1 airstrip. Here the 
fanatic Japs had dug in beneath great tree roots. For seven days 
of close fighting the Americans hacked and dug at the Japs 
with bazooka, mortar, artillery and small-arms fire. In many in- 
stances the Dixies had to root out the Japs with the bayonet. 

The 155th Infantry took over the point of the march from 
Maramag, and scored a rousing rout of the enemy when it sur- 
prised an enemy force sunning itself along a stream. In a quick 
attack the 155th killed 96 Japs while losing but one man. 

The Division was commended by Lieutenant General Rob- 
ert L. Eichelberger, commanding the Eighth Army, for its exe- 
cution of the operation which split all Jap forces in central 


32nd Infantry Division 

"Look out! Look out! Here comes the Thirty-second . . ." These 
are the proud opening words of the "32nd Division March." Not 
too many people back home know the song, but the strain is 
familiar to Australian girls, Papuan natives, kids in the Philip- 
pines, and to the thousands of soldiers who have seen action 
under the banner of the "Red Arrow" Division since it began 
fighting late in 1942 in the evil-smelling swamps of New Guinea. 

The fighting reputation of the 32nd is symbolized by its Red 
Arrow shoulder insignia. On tactical maps the enemy's lines 
are indicated in red, and the 32nd's patch is a reminder to those 
who wear it that no enemy has ever stopped the men of the 
Red Arrow. They have another nickname— "Les Terribles" It 
was given them by an admiring French general during the last 
war, when the 32nd earned four battle streamers and was first 
to crack the Hindenburg Line. 

Originally composed of National Guardsmen from Wiscon- 
sin and Michigan, the 32nd sailed for the Pacific on April 22, 
1942. Landing at Adelaide, South Australia, it trained there, 
later moved to a camp just outside of Brisbane, Queensland, 
and was rushed to New Guinea in the fall when Japanese forces 
crossed the Owen Stanley Mountains, and threatened the vital 
Allied base of Port Moresby. Many of the Red Arrowmen were 
flown across the Owen Stanleys— the first large-scale airborne 


movement of combat Infantrymen in American military history 
—to take up positions alongside the Australians in the jungles 
surrounding Jap-held Buna. The 2nd Battalion of the 126th In- 
fantry, however, marched across the Owen Stanleys over an 
uncharted trail. It took a little over forty minutes to fly across 
the mountains; to march across them took 49 agonizing days. 

The units of the Division that fought at Buna suffered more 
casualties, many of them from jungle diseases, than their origi- 
nal strength. With the fall of Sanananda on January 22, 1943, 
the campaign was officially ended, and the victorious Division 
returned to Australia to lick its wounds and reorganize. Nearly 
a year later, on January 2, 1944, elements of the 32nd Division 
went back into action at Saidor, New Guinea, and, in April, at 
Aitape. Until August, there was bitter fighting against the Japa- 
nese Eighteenth Army, trying desperately to get past Aitape 
and attack the Allied base at Hollandia. The Japs never made it, 
and had 9,300 men killed in the effort. 

From Aitape, part of the Division moved on to Morotai, in 
the Halmahera Islands, in September, and then the whole Divi- 
sion embarked from Hollandia and headed for the Philippines, 
landing on Leyte on November 14 and almost immediately go- 
ing into a fierce 26-day battle in precipitous mountains with 
deep mud underfoot and tangled forests overhead. In those 36 
days the 32nd gained just six and a half miles, but in that slow 
advance it killed 6,700 more Japs. 

Withdrawn from battle on January 4, 1945, the 32d Divi- 
sion rested for three weeks and then moved on to Luzon, plung- 
ing into the same kind of jungle fighting and pushing deep into 
the Cagayan Valley on northern Luzon, where the Japs were 
making their last stand. When the battle for Luzon ended, 
the 32nd had to its credit more than 600 days of combat— nearly 
half the total time the country had been at war up to then. 


33d Infantry Division 

If the U. S. Army operated on a "finders keepers" policy, the 
Doughboys of the 33d Infantry Division would be the richest 
soldiers in the world, with every man a near millionaire. 

None of the sourdoughs in the Alaskan Gold Rush struck it 
as rich as the Doughs of the 33d did in their campaign against 
the Japs on Luzon in the Philippines, Shortly after going into 
the line on Luzon the 33d, which is officially known as the 
"Prairie" Division, earned the unofficial nickname "The Money 
Division." In attacking the fortified city of Rosario the 33d's 
artillery scored a direct hit on buried treasure along the high- 
way, hurling prewar silver pesos all over the landscape. The 
loot, which had been stolen by the Japs and buried as they 
retreated, was estimated at half a million dollars, and required 
four trucks to haul it away. 

A few days later artillerymen digging new gun positions un- 
earthed $70,000 more in pesos. But it was not until the 33d was 
battling for Baguio, in the Benguet Mountains, that it really 
struck it rich. After hard fighting the men of the Prairie re- 
captured twelve gold mines, including some of the richest in the 
world. The seven large mines taken by the gold diggers pro- 
duced 750,000,000 pesos in gold in the year before Pearl Harbor. 

June 19, 1945, marked two years of foreign service for the 
Joes who wear the golden cross on the black circle on their 


shoulders. The 33d sailed from San Francisco in July 1943, 
and guarded vital installations in Hawaii until April 1944, when 
it moved to New Guinea. After participating in the Wakde- 
Sarmi operation, the Golden Crossers jumped off on Christmas 
Eve of 1944 for the second Battle of Morotai in the Netherlands 
East Indies. 

The 33d entered the Battle of Luzon on February 10, 1945, 
relieving the 43d Infantry Division and opening the drive to 
Baguio, summer capital of Luzon, and headquarters of General 
Yamashita. The Japs had elected to make their last-ditch stand 
in and about the mile-high city of Baguio, and the 33d, working 
with the 32d and 37th Divisions, was in for many bitter battles 
with the desperate Nips. 

For three months the 33d was engaged in savage mountain 
fighting, over the most rugged terrain of all Luzon. The battles 
were sharp and severe against an enemy who fought and died 
on his hilltop positions. There was no easy route to Baguio; it 
was uphill over the mountains all the way, and the Division had 
to make its roads as it went. At the beginning of the campaign 
the 33d had a division front of 20 miles. Three months later, 
just before the capitulation of the city, the Golden Crossers 
were fighting on a 65-mile front. 

The 33d opened its drive by capturing the key towns of 
Rosario and Aringay, but to accomplish this it had to wage two 
vicious battles at Bench Mark and Question Mark hills. The 
33d was one of the first divisions in the Pacific to prove to the 
Japs that they were not the only soldiers capable of success- 
ful night attacks. It was in surprise attacks at night that the 
33d seized Galiano and Asin which provided the Americans 
with an all-weather road for the final drive on Baguio. 

Several thousand persons, including Brigadier General Man- 
uel Roxas, former aide to General MacArthur, were rescued 
from the Japs at Baguio, and most of them escaped through the 
33d Division lines. Staff Sergeant James Lindquist, of Bloom- 
field, Connecticut, had the honor of leading General Roxas 
through the lines. The sergeant, with a carrying party, met the 
fleeing general on the outskirts of the city, and under the noses 
of a Japanese outpost patrol. The 33d also liberated Milagros 
Osmena, daughter of the President of the Philippines. 


34th Infantry Division 

When complete histories are written of Allied operations 
in the Mediterranean Theater, the story of the progress of our 
forces from the coast of North Africa up the long Italian penin- 
sula will be in many ways that of the 34th Division. No outfit 
has fought harder and longer, and the slow, steady, costly ad- 
vance of the "Red Bull" Division from November 1942 to May 
1945 is a typical example of grim infantry warfare over terrain 
so rugged that the foot soldier was the only consistently usable 
means of waging war. 

Although its first members in this war were National 
Guardsmen from Iowa, Minnesota, and the Dakotas, the 34th 
has a shoulder patch— the background is an olla, a Mexican 
water bottle— inspired by the desert country of the Southwest, 
where it trained during World War I, It was the first Division 
to be shipped overseas after Pearl Harbor, its first elements 
embarking in January 1942, and sailing to Northern Ireland 
where the 34th trained for the invasion of North Africa. After 
landing at Algiers, it trained some more for the campaign in 
Tunisia. Parts of it were badly hit at Fa'id Pass, and it had an- 
other rough time at Fondouk, but in the famous Battle of Hill 
609, the 34th more than repaid the enemy for its previous set- 
backs and paved the way for the advance on Mateur and Bizerte. 

The 34th rested during the Sicilian campaign, and then 


sailed for Salerno as a reserve division. Only one 34th unit, 
the 151st Field Artillery Battalion, got ashore at the start of the 
invasion, and during eight stormy days it fired more rounds than 
it had during the whole of Tunisia. One battery of the 151st, 
its guns overrun by German tanks, withdrew, and then, armed 
only with rifles, fought back and recaptured its guns. 

During the 20 months of fighting in Italy that followed, the 
34th's artillery ran its wartime total of shells expended to 
1,125,639— the record for any divisional artillery in this war. 
The 34th, after the whole Division had assembled at Salerno, 
moved up to the German defense line at the Volturno, and three 
times bridged that formidable river under fire. Once the assault 
battalions, after a crossing, had to pick their way single file 
through a fire-swept enemy minefield. For 76 straight days, the 
34th maintained contact with the enemy, finally pushing into 
the outskirts of Cassino, under withering fire directed by Ger- 
man observers in the Benedictine Abbey at Monte Cassino. On 
the day the 34th was withdrawn from the city, the Abbey was 
finally bombed, after ground forces had long been forbidden to 
assault it. Then five Divisions hammered their way into Cas- 
sino, completing the job the 34th had started. 

The Red Bull men moved on to the Anzio beachhead, broke 
out of there on May 25, 1944, marched through Rome, and then 
took Castellina, Pastina, Fauglia, Leghorn, and other cities, 
finally bumping into the Gothic Line in October. For four 
months the Division stayed there, dug in, probing the heavy 
enemy defenses, constantly patrolling and waiting for an open- 
ing. Finally, in February 1945, the Fifth Army launched a 
heavy attack, and the tired 34th reached Bologna and moved 
out through the Po Valley as all enemy resistance began to 
crumble. On May 3, when the German LXXV Corps surren- 
dered in Milan to Major General Charles L. Bolte, commander 
of the 34th, the Division's long job was done. Fifteen thousand 
Purple Hearts had gone to wearers of the Red Bull, and more 
than 3,000 decorations for bravery. The 34th had learned so 
well the cost of living up to its own motto— "Attack, Attack, 


35th Infantry Division 

When the 35th Infantry Division was fighting in France in 
World War I, it had an inconspicuous captain of artillery named 
Harry S. Truman. 

Twenty-seven years later, this same Harry Truman, now 
President of the United States, stepped ashore at Antwerp on his 
way to the Potsdam Conference with Churchill and Stalin, and 
inspected a guard of honor from the 137th Infantry, one of the 
regiments of his World War I Division, the fighting 35th. 

Lining the President's route from Antwerp to Brussels were 
1,600 Doughboys from the same regiment, all wearing the same 
Santa Fe cross on their shoulders that the President wore 
against the Kaiser's armies. 

The President was well guarded. The men of the 35th who 
lined the streets to honor and protect their commander-in-chief 
wore five battle stars, and could tell of fighting with five armies 
in the battle to crush the Nazis. 

From the time the Santa Fe Doughs hit Omaha Beach in 
France in July 1944, until the Germans surrendered to the might 
of the Allied forces, they served with the American First, Third, 
Seventh, Ninth and Fifteenth Armies, and fought the Wehr- 
macht from St.L6 to the Elbe River. 

The 35th was in the line two days after hitting Omaha 
Beach and began battling toward, and finally into, rubble- 
strewn St.IA It fought its way across the Cherbourg peninsula, 


blasted Vire, and, in one of the most vicious battles in France, 
repulsed a counterattack that threatened to overrun Avranches. 
Despite heavy casualties, the Santa Fe men swung east to re- 
capture important terrain near Mortain, and rescue the 30th 
Division's "Lost Battalion." 

Spearheaded by the machines of the 4th Armored Division, 
the 35th rushed still farther east to take town after town. Once 
it hit the Le Mans-Orleans highway, it drove to the important 
stronghold of Orleans and captured it in a night and day of 
savage battling. 

The 35th continued to drive straight across France. It 
spanned the Loing, Seine, Loire, Marne and Meuse Rivers. In 
mid-September, still rolling at top speed, it liberated the city 
of Nancy. For three months the Santa Fe patch boys kept mov- 
ing forward, and on December 5 fired their first round of ammo 
into Germany. They swept past Sarreguemines, and then crossed 
the Saar. 

Then Rundstedt launched the Battle of the Bulge. 
The Santa Fe then made three great jumps. It was shifted to 
the First Army and, during the Christmas holidays, plunged into 
battle. Despite terrific punishment, the 35th repulsed attacks by 
four crack German divisions and eliminated the threat to the 
right flank of the Bastogne highway. 

This threat ended, the Santa Fe made a dramatic leap to the 
Seventh Army in the south, where a breakthrough was threat- 
ened. Again the 35th held, and was ready for a third and even 
more sensational jump. In bitter weather it was rushed 292 
miles north to join the Ninth Army. 

It reached Rheinberg, and was the last of the Ninth Armv 
elements to gain the Rhine. Worn from constant battles, the 
Santa Fe Doughs banged away at the Germans trapped in the 
Wesel pocket, and drove into the Ruhr. It met bitter opposi- 
tion all the way, but it would not be stopped. 

Later, the 35th Division joined the Fifteenth Army, and at 
the war's end had taken more than 20,000 prisoners, and re- 
ceived more than 3,000 awards. 


36th Infantry Division 

"Deep in the Heart of Texas" is the theme song of the "Texas" 
Division, but it has been a long time since its men have seen the 
prairies of the Lone Star State. 

The first American Division to land on continental Europe, 
the Texans have been deep in the heart of Italy, France and 
Germany since late in 1943, 

The rough, tough men who wear the blue arrowhead and 
green T on their shoulders ended their campaign against the 
Germans by capturing two of the Nazi chieftains who had done 
the most to make life miserable for the Division since it first 
went ashore at Salerno in September 1943. The first to fall into 
the clutches of the Texans was Field Marshal Von Rundstedt, 
ace strategist and planner of the mighty winter offensive. 
Shortly after, the biggest Nazi of them all, Reichsmarschal Her- 
mann Goering, was taken to the rear under cover of the 36th's 

The 36th's baptism of fire was a bloody one. For five days 
after the Division struck at Salerno the issue was in doubt, and 
the Texans suffered heavily before the beachhead was secured. 
But there was to be no rest for them. Few Doughboys in this 
war have undergone a more merciless fire than did the Western- 
ers in their attempts to cross the Rapido River. Crack German 
troops raked them with every weapon of warfare when they 
plunged into the swiftly moving waters of the Rapido. 


It was in this campaign, near Altavilla, that the 36th pro- 
duced one of the outstanding heroes of the war. 

A private first class, Charles E. Kelly, voluntarily joined a 
patrol and located and neutralized enemy gun positions. Again 
voluntarily, Kelly made his way under intense fire to a hill a 
mile away, reporting on his return that it was held by the enemy. 
Joining another patrol, he assisted in putting two machine guns 
out of action. He found an ammunition dump under enemy fire, 
and joined in its defense. He protected his position all night and 
held off an enemy detachment the next day to cover the with- 
drawal of his outfit. Kelly, now known to all Americans as 
"Commando," was awarded the Medal of Honor for his heroic 

Following the savage battle for Cassino, the Texans were 
given seven weeks of rest and then thrown back into battle. It 
joined the beachhead forces at Anzio, and by a brilliant ma- 
neuver captured Velletri and paved the way for the fall of Rome. 
The men hoped for a rest in Rome but they didn't get it. They 
moved through the Eternal City on the double, hot in pursuit of 
the fleeing Germans. 

The Texans made their second landing, in southern France, 
in August of 1944. Objectives were gained so fast that the Divi- 
sion got into the position east and north of the German Ninth 
Army at Montelimar and cut it to ribbons. A month after the 
Division hit the beaches at St. Raphael, it had gained 300 miles 
and was in the foothills of the Vosges, facing the formidable 
Moselle River. 

The Moselle was one of the German's heaviest fixed lines of 
defense, but the Texans outwitted the defenders. Led by the 
70-year-old Mayor of Raon-aux-Bois, who knew every ripple of 
the Moselle near his town, the 1st and 3d Battalions of the 141st 
Infantry, wading waist deep, sneaked across a little-known ford 
during the night and established a bridgehead. Recovering 
from their surprise, the Germans turned murderous fire on the 
battalions. But the Texans drove on into the forests that cov- 
ered the slopes of the Vosges. The 442nd Infantry Combat 
Team, made up of Japanese-Americans, distinguished itself 
with a savage attack that took the town of Bruyeres. Mines, snip- 
ers and artillery made the battle in the forests a nightmare. 


The 36th kept moving, and before it rested had established 
the modern army record of 132 days of consecutive combat. The 
Texans took Colmar and Oberhoffen, and smashed on across the 
Rhine, taking Wissembourg, to plant the Lone Star flag of Texas 
deep in the heart of Germany. 


37th Infantry Division 

In May 1942, the 37th Division sailed under the Golden Gate. 

Today, more than 3,500 "Originals" form the nucleus of 
Ohio's fighting "Buckeyes" who have conquered the Japanese at 
New Georgia, Bougainville, and at Manila and Baguio in Luzon. 

Few outfits in the Pacific have seen more of the enemy, and 
killed more of the enemy, than the belting Buckeyes. From the 
time in 1943 when they drove ashore at New Georgia, until they 
chased Yamashita and his puppet government from the hills of 
Baguio, summer capital of the Philippines, almost two years 
later, the men from Ohio have faced the enemy almost con- 

Despite the 37th's magnificent spearheading of the drive 
that liberated Luzon and recaptured Manila, the Buckeyes prob- 
ably will be best remembered by historians for their slaughter 
of the Japanese on Bougainville in the Northern Solomons. 

The 37th hit Bougainville in November of 1943 as part of 
a Marine amphibious corps and won its beachhead on Empress 
Augusta Bay with comparative ease. But three months later the 
same 40,000 Japanese who had been pushed across the hills 
struck in full fury, and the bloody second battle of Bougainville 
was on. The Japanese attack was led by the 6th Division, one 
of the Imperial Army's best and the Division which perpetrated 
the rape of Nanking. 

Four times the Japanese, backed by concentrated artillery 


fire, slashed at the 37th's defense lines. And four times they 
were hurled back with a loss of 8,000 men. The heaviest fight- 
ing was concentrated on Hill 700, the "Hill of Heroes/' the 37th 
calls it. The battle raged here in an area not more than 100 yards 
long and 50 yards wide. Hill 700 and nearby Hill 260, where 
some of the most bitter hand-to-hand fighting of the war was 
fought, are now classrooms for the training of replacements. 

On January 9, 1945, the Buckeyes came ashore on D-day at 
Lingayen Gulf and spearheaded MacArthur's return to Manila, 
which was reached on February 4. The Doughboys of the 37th 
walked and fought the full 142 miles from Lingayen to Manila. 
In the capital of the Philippines the Buckeyes had to forget all 
about jungle fighting, at which they were masters, and adopt 
a new kind of warfare— street fighting. 

Every building was a fortress, every street corner was a ma- 
chine-gun nest. Thousands of mines had been sown by the 
Japanese and booby traps abounded. But the Buckeyes beat 
the Japs at their own game, and when the city finally fell the 
37th had accounted for 12,000 dead Nips. 

From Manila and its stifling heat the Buckeyes moved into 
the mountains in northern Luzon, and in conjunction with the 
33d Division liberated the mile-high city of Baguio, anchor of 
the Japanese northern defense line. It was from Baguio that 
General Yamashita and President Laurel, puppet head of the 
Philippines, fled to what Tokyo Rose called a "more central loca- 

When the news of Germany's surrender came the 37th was 
too busy to celebrate. It was working in treacherous Balete 
Pass, the southern gateway to the Cagayan Valley and Luzon's 
northern coast. 

Shortly after, the men of the 37th, who wear as a shoulder 
patch a red-and-white disc which appears on the state flag of 
Ohio, broke into the valley and eliminated the thousands of 
Japanese defenders there. 


38th Infantry Division 

Something new has been added to the insignia of the 38th In- 
fantry Division. Across the top of the shield-shaped red-white- 
and-blue patch, with its interlocking C and Y, the men who wear 
it now like to append a scroll with the words "Avengers of Ba^ 

It belongs there too, because the Doughboys of the 38th, the 
Cyclone Division, spearheaded the drive which annihilated the 
Japanese forces on Bataan in the battle that liberated Luzon. 

During this drive, elements of the 38th swept through Ba- 
knga, Pilar, and across the neck of land to Bagac— the same 
route over which the Japanese had tortured and humiliated the 
iieroic American defenders of Bataan in the infamous March of 
Death in 1942. 

The Cyclone Division— it got its name in 1917, at Camp 
Shelby, Mississippi, when the tent-city area in which it was 
bivouacked was levelled by tremendous winds— struck like a 
cyclone when it landed on Luzon in January of 1945. The 
Cyclones came ashore near Subic Bay on the famed peninsula, 
where they cut behind the Japs then fighting our Lingayen 
Gulf forces on the central plains of the island. 

In a fierce, 16-day action, during which the Japs threw 
everything in the book at them, the Cyclones smashed through 
an intricate maze of fortifications to take Zig Zag Pass, key 
defense of the Bataan Peninsula. The Japs used all their re- 


sources in an effort to hold this pass. Mountain guns blasted 
the winding road to the pass. Mines made every step a danger- 
ous one. Machine guns swept every twist and turn, and from 
caves and heavily fortified pillboxes the Nips poured continual 
fire. But the 38th was not to be denied. 

One combat team made an amphibious assault at Mariveles, 
on the tip of the peninsula, and caught the Japs fiat-footed. An- 
other struck swiftly down the east coast to sweep along the 
Death March route. Other units landed, on D-plus-4, on Cor- 
regidor to assist in the defeat of that Jap-held rock fortress. 

The Division was then divided up into three regimental com- 
bat teams. 

One force mopped up remnants of enemy troops on the 
peninsula. Another, plus a provisional company organized from 
the division artillery, struck north and west of Zig Zag Pass 
against powerful enemy defenses in the rugged Zambales Moun- 
tain ranges, while the third was charged with the reduction of 
enemy defenses on the remaining three islands— Caballo, Fort 
Drum and Carabao— guarding the entrance to Manila Bay. 
This force, the 151st Infantry, had previously occupied Grande 
Island, in Subic Bay. 

With these missions completed, the Cyclones moved as a 
unit to the Sierra Madre Mountains northeast of Manila to give 
battle to Jap forces drawn up behind the Shimbu Line, an area 
defended by almost impassable terrain in addition to a well de- 
veloped and interlocking series of eaves, pillboxes, tunnels, and 
artillery emplacements. To break this line, the Doughs of the 
38th fought a series of savage battles. The Japs were burned 
from their caves with flamethrowers, blasted out with satchel 
charges, and rooted out with bayonet and hand grenades. The 
engagement came to an end when the 38th seized the Marikina 
River line and captured Wawa Dam, an important source of 
water supply to Manila. 

When Wawa Dam was seized the Avengers of Bataan had 
killed 17,600 Japs, captured 466 prisoners, and established an 
exceedingly low ratio of KIAs to enemy dead— 1 to 36. 


40th Infantry Division 

When Major General Rapp Brush led the veteran 40th In- 
fantry Division into the Philippine liberation campaign, he 
began retracing the steps of his youth. 

On the day the 40th liberated the city of Lingayen, General 
Brush rode through its shell-pocked streets. 

"This doesn't look like much of a playground for a boy," he 

As a boy in Lingayen, where his father was Military District 
Commander in 1901, the leader of the "Sunburst" Division had 
taught Filipino youngsters to play baseball. When General 
Brush had led his Doughboys in a lightning, 10-day liberation 
of the island of Panay, he established his headquarters in Iloilo, 
where his father once served as commanding general. 

The thorough knowledge of the country owned by General 
Brush, plus the blazing combat spirit of his men, made the 40th 
a terror to the Japanese. 

The Doughboys of the 40th were better than green hands at 
fighting when they landed on Luzon on D-day. Early in 1944 
they had been in action on New Britain in the Bismarck Archi- 
pelago. The Infantrymen, knifing through snarled jungle 
growth, continued the offensive initiated by the 1st Marine 
Division. From Talasea on New Britain's north coast, Dough- 
boys of the 40th jumped 25 miles eastward to capture the Cape 
Moskins airdome, and make escape-proof the trap which sur- 
rounded thousands of Japanese troops in the Rabaul area. 


The 40th, known also as the "Rattlesnake" Division, struck 
with the speed of that reptile when it landed at Luzon. By night- 
fall of D-day, the 40th had rolled on past Lingayen and crossed 
the Agno-Calmay River. On January 21, 11 days after the in- 
vasion, soldiers of the 40th entered Tarlac, provincial capital 
and key highway-railroad junction. Crossing the Bamban River, 
Sunburst footsloggers were the first American troops to reach 
Clark Field, target of the earliest Japanese bombing attack in 
the Philippines after the outbreak of the Pacific war. The 40th 
went on to capture Fort Stotsenburg and Camp O'Donnell, 
where hundreds of prisoners of Bataan and Corregidor died. 

At the end of 53 continuous days of fighting on Luzon the 
40th had killed 6,145 of the enemy. 

Early in March elements of the 40th surprised the Japs by 
landing on Panay Island in the Visayas. On the third day of 
fighting, the Doughboys captured Iloilo, second most important 
city in the Philippines. The city had been badly damaged by 
the Japanese but the harbor facilities were immediately put to 
use. Within ten days all of Panay had been liberated, and Amer- 
ican planes began landing on airstrips at Santa Barbara and 

Units of the 40th landed on Guimaras and Inampulugan Is- 
lands, between Panay and Negros, to erase any threat to Amer- 
ican sea lanes in the central Philippines. Late in March the 
entire Division jumped across Guimaras Strait for an invasion 
of Negros. 

Twenty-seven hours after H-hour the Sunbursters had cap- 
tured Bacolod, capital of Negros Occidental. By June 1 the 40th 
had killed and captured nearly 5,000 Japs on Panay and Negros. 

While the 160th and 185th Infantry Regiments were operat- 
ing in the Visayas, the 108th effected a landing on Masbate Is- 
land in the Visayan Sea between Luzon and Panay, and 
destroyed the Jap garrison there. The Doughboys of the hard- 
hitting 108th then went ashore on the northern coast of Min- 
danao, to seal the doom of the Japs trapped between the 31st 
and 40th Divisions. 


41st Infantry Division 

From Papua's bloody Sanananda in early 1943, to Zamboanga's 
matted jungles more than two years later, the 41st Infantry Divi- 
sion established a combat record second to none. 

The men who wear a golden setting sun against a crimson 
background for a shoulder patch call themselves the "Jmrgleers," 
and rightly so. The first complete division to reach the South- 
west Pacific, they have done more jungle fighting than any other 
American outfit. So mercilessly have they scourged the Japa- 
nese that Tokyo Rose, when she spoke of the 41st, always re- 
ferred to them as "The Butchers." 

The Jungleers reached Melbourne in April 1942, and had 
their first fight with the Japs, after flying over the Owen Stan- 
leys, at Sanananda that December. Outnumbered, and with lit- 
tle or no naval or air support, the 41st had to rely on scanty sup- 
plies brought in by air over the Owen Stanley Mountains, and, 
when the fighting was finished, they came out in rags. 

Six months later the Doughboys of the 41st went ashore 
below Salamaua for the "Foxhole Furlough." Here they set a 
theater record— 76 days of unrelieved jungle fighting. They 
presented a strange sight at the end of the campaign, most of 
them emerging from the bush wearing Japanese naval uniforms. 
Their own clothes had worn out long before, and only the cap- 
ture of Jap clothing saved them from fighting in the raw. 

In 1944, within 36 days, the 41st broke the grip the Japanese 
had held on New Guinea for two years. In a series of strides up 
900 miles of New Guinea's tangled jungle, the 41st, between 
April 23 and May 27, smote and conquered the foe at Aitape, 
Hollandia, Wakde, and Biak. By these brilliant successes, the 
pathway to the Philippines was cleared. 


Many tactics our forces later used against the Nips were 
developed by the Jungleers in their New Guinea fights. The 
41st Division was the first outfit to be opposed by Japanese 
tanks, and it was on Biak that the Nips first resorted to cave 
defenses. The 41st's method of breaking up the cave defenses 
was employed at Saipan, Leyte, and Iwo Jima. 

The Jungleers started their work in the Philippines on Feb- 
ruary 28, 1945, when they landed at Palawan, westernmost isle 
of the Philippine group. In 34 combat crowded days the Jun- 
gleers bettered their 1944 mark of four assault landings in 36 
days by making the same number in 34 days. After Palawan, a 
second punch was delivered in the initial invasion of Mindanao. 
Elements of the Division then struck Basilan Island, and in 
three days secured it. On April 2 the 41st, quite at home on 
beachheads now, landed on the tip of Tawitawi and destroyed 
the Japanese there. 

The 41st, originally composed of National Guardsmen from 
the Northwest, have a sign "End of the Oregon Trail." They 
planned all along to plant it in the front yard of the Imperial 
Palace in Tokyo, and their chance finally arrived as they came 
victoriously ashore in Japan as part of the Army of Occupation. 


42nd Infantry Division 

America's best known division, the 42nd } does not believe in 
hiding its light under a bushel. 

Visitors to torn, battered Germany, report that one can fol- 
low the path of the fighting 42nd by keeping an eye out for 
rainbows painted on the sides of buildings. 

Let an element of the Division halt for a moment and some 
GI, paint brush in hand, would splash the red, gold and blue of 
the rainbow, for all to see. 

The 42nd got its nickname in World War I when one of its 
majors, noting that its personnel was drawn from 26 states and 
the District of Columbia, said "This Division will stretch over 
the land like a rainbow." 

The major who inspired the nickname has moved up in 
grade since that time. He is now General of the Army Douglas 

The 42nd was late getting into action against the Nazis, but 
once in the line, it fought with the same dash which character- 
ized the World War I Rainbow, in the Champagne, Cham- 
pagne-Marne, and Aisne-Marne offensives. 

The Division first faced the Wehrmacht in December 1944, 
when, under the Seventh Army, it was given the unglamorous 
role of plugging gaps and weak spots on the army's right flank 
near Saarbriicken. Near the middle of February the Rainbows 


were readied for the attack, and it was at this time that the Divi- 
sion was officially announced as part of the Seventh Army. 

A month later, the 42nd made its first penetration of Ger- 
many. In bitter weather, the men with the rainbows round 
their shoulders, drove through the Hardt Mountains. Early in 
April the towns of Dahn and Busenberg fell to the slugging 
Doughs. These conquests were made doubly difficult by the 
weather and terrain. Vehicles could not be used on the icy 
mountain roads, and it was necessary to move in supplies by 
pack mule. 

Rolling east of the Rhine, the 42nd took Furth and Schwei- 
nau, drove on to capture Schweinfurt, and then joined in the 
assault on Number g. 

The 42nd was the first division to reach Munich, and from 
Munich it went on to infamous Dachau, and helped liberate 
32,000 inmates of this nightmarish Nazi prison camp. 

The Rainbows moved into Austria, collecting prisoners by 
the thousands. One of the Nazi "prizes" to fall into the Rain- 
bow's hands was Major General Wilhelm, German communica- 
tions chief. 

Following V-E Day, the Rainbow occupied Ritsbah. the 
Hollywood of Germany. 


43d Infantry Division 

From the rock-bound coasts of Maine to half the islands in 
the Pacific and to Japan itself— that is the war record of New 
England's 43d Division. The veterans of the 43d, drawn from 
Maine, Rhode Island, Vermont and Connecticut, wear the black 
grape leaf on a red quatref oil as a shoulder patch, and are quali- 
fied to wear four campaign stars on their Asiatic ribbon. 

The "Winged Victory" Division, which was organized 
shortly after World War I, has many units which date back to 
the Revolution. Reactivated early in 1941, the New Englanders 
have been almost constantly on the go ever since. 

The 43d's first assignment overseas was a tour of duty in 
New Zealand, when it appeared likely that the Japanese might 
invade that country. It then shipped for a brief stay in New 
Caledonia. Early in 1943 the New Englanders reached Guadal- 
canal before that campaign had ended and aided in the mop- 
ping up of isolated Japanese units. 

A month later the New Englanders began the war in earn- 
est. Their first mission as a unit was the invasion of the Russell 
Islands, and the men with the twang were disappointed when 
they took the islands without opposition. But they were soon to 
long for this quiet invasion. With elements of the Army, Navy 
and Marines, the 43d, in late June of 1943, assaulted New 
Georgia, landing on Rendova Island. 

For 35 days of what many authorities believe to be the 


dirtiest, roughest campaign of the early war in the Pacific, the 
43d fought for Munda airport. As yet inexperienced in the ways 
of jungle fighting, the 43d was opposed by some of the crack 
elements of the Imperial Japanese Army. All the tricks of the 
jungle which eventually became old stuff to our troops were 
strange to the men of the 43d in the fight for Munda. They had 
to learn the hard and bloody way, and they did. On August 5 
the 43d broke the Japanese resistance and seized its prime ob- 
jective—the vital Munda airstrip. 

New Guinea's stinking hell was the next stop for the men 
from the land of the fir and pine. They joined other forces at 
Aitape and had a share in the bloody battle of the Driniumor 
River. It was there that the Japanese, in an effort to break 
through the encircling American forces, were slaughtered by 
the thousands as thcfy attempted a crossing of the swift-flowing 

The 43d drew a mean assignment in the invasion of Luzon. 
Landing on D-day on January 9, 1945, at Lingayen Gulf, the 
43d's mission was to take the left flank and secure the hill masses 
and road network in order to block off the strong Japanese forces 
in the mountains at Baguio. 

The Japanese defenses of the island were such that the 43d 
bore the brunt of the fighting in securing positions on Lingayen 
Gulf. While other assault divisions were moving south over 
comparatively flat terrain, and over highways, the New Eng- 
enders were deep in the hills. There they encountered heavy 
mountain guns and deep cave positions, and were forced to 
move their supplies up trailless slopes. For the first 30 days the 
43d was in constant battle with the enemy. 

Later the 43d moved to the east of Manila and helped clear 
the Nips from the hills near the city. One of the most brilliant 
campaigns in the fight for the liberation of Luzon was staged 
by the 43d when, working with guerrilla forces, it took a moun- 
tain dam which was vital to Manila's water supply. 


44th Infantry Division 

Before Pearl Harbor, the shoulder patch of the 44th Division 
was a familiar sight around New York. When it went into train- 
ing in September 1940, the 44th was composed of National 
Guard units from New York and New Jersey. The blue-and- 
orange colors of its patch are those of the Netherlands House of 
Nassau, which controlled the original settlers of the Division's 
home areas. After Pearl Harbor, however, the 44th left the East 
for extensive combat training, and remained on duty at various 
camps in the United States for four years until September 1944, 
when it embarked for the European Theater of Operations 
shortly after the Allied invasion of southern France. 

The 44th soon became a part of the Seventh Army, which 
had conducted those landing operations and was pushing north- 
ward for a junction with the forces that had driven into Europe 
from Normandy. In October, just east of Luneville, France, the 
Division went into action and took part in the Seventh Army's 
drive to secure several passes in the Vosges Mountains. It hadn't 
been committed to battle long before it learned a severe lesson 
in what war can be like at its worst. 

Six days after its first taste of blood, the 44th was hit by a 
heavy German counterattack, and its front lines were pierced. 
The Division rallied and nullified this blow, and then, working 
with the French 2nd Armored Division, it started a slow, steady 
advance through Alsace-Lorraine, taking Leintrey, Avricourt, 


and Sarrebourg. One battalion, accompanying the French, 
reached the Rhine at Strasbourg. On November 25, while the 
two Allied divisions crept forward over snow-covered ground 
every inch of which was savagely defended, one battalion of the 
44th won itself a citation for especially distinguished action and, 
in doing so, saved the whole Division and neighboring forces 
from rough treatment and possible annihilation. 

The 2nd Battalion of the 114th Infantry Regiment, defend- 
ing a 4,000-yard sector north of Schalbeck, France, that day, was 
suddenly struck by a picked panzer division, which had the mis- 
sion of grinding through the 44th, retaking Sarrebourg, and cut- 
ting off all the Allies east of the Vosges. Although the Germans 
had more men and more fire power, the battalion grimly held its 
positions, fighting against German 88s from shallow foxholes, 
and prevented the enemy from breaking through. General Patch 
later credited the battalion with saving the whole Seventh Army. 

By December the Division, thoroughly conditioned to com- 
bat, had reached the Maginot Line and had taken the massive 
concrete and steel blockhouses at Fort Simserhof. On New 
Year's Eve another panzer division hit the 44th near the Saar 
River, and the 44th inflicted 6,000 casualties on it while turning 
back 20 vicious enemy attacks. One of the casualties was the 
first SS Division commander to be captured on the Western 

From then on the 44th had comparatively clear sailing. Un- 
der the command of Major General William F. Dean, it con- 
solidated its positions below the Saar during January until it 
was relieved in March after 144 days of combat. In the succeed- 
ing months of operations, it rolled deep into Europe as German 
resistance began to crumble on the southern front, crossing the 
Rhine, capturing Mannheim, and slashing into the Austrian 
Tyrol. V-E Day found it firmly established at Imst, Austria, and 
on that day the 44th made contact with the Fifth Army coming 
up from Italy. 


45th Infantry Division 

In May 1943, troops stationed at Camp Patrick Henry in Vir- 
ginia witnessed one of the strangest spectacles in American mili- 
tary history— a campfire war dance put on by soldiers about to 
embark for overseas. They were some of the 1,500 American 
Indians--from 28 tribes— who belonged to the "Thunderbird" 
Division. Composed in 1940, when it was activated, of National 
Guardsmen from Oklahoma, Colorado, New Mexico, and Ari- 
zona, the 45th was much changed after its first two years of 
foreign service. Few of the Indians were left in its ranks. Its 
total casualties had amounted to twice its original strength. 

But the 45th was used to changes. For instance, for years its 
shoulder patch, four-sided for the states to which it owed alle- 
giance, had displayed a respectable old Indian design— the 
swastika. When the Nazis rose to power, the Division hastily 
substituted for this unseemly symbol another traditional Indian 
figure— that of the thunderbird, the Red Men's "sacred bearer 
of unlimited happiness." 

At Oran, the Division trained for the first invasion of Europe 
—Sicily. On D-day, the 45th stormed ashore at Scoglitti, and in 
three weeks had overrun 1,000 square miles of enemy-held terri- 
tory, moving so relentlessly that one German prisoner com- 
plained peevishly, "Don't you ever sleep?" The high spot of the 
22-day campaign was the fierce fight for "Bloody Ridge," just 
before the Thunderbirds took San Stefano. 


When the Allies landed at Salerno in September, the 45th 
went in, on D-plus-1, at Paestum, and fought for four bitter 
months through the Apennines until it was relieved on January 
9, 1944. During this stretch, the Division crossed the Volturno 
River, took Venafro, and battled the enemy on icy mountaintops 
where it was so cold the Doughboys couldn't dig foxholes in the 
hard ground. Some of the Thunderbirds turned muleskinners, in 
order to get supplies to the front lines over trails impassable for 
vehicles. After a brief rest, the 45th went ashore again at Anzio, 
and remained there under ceaseless enemy fire for 76 days. It 
turned back the major German counterattack calculated to drive 
the Allies back into the sea, and three units of the Division re- 
ceived citations for heroism. 

After the breakthrough out of the beachhead, the 45th 
marched north to Rome, and was relieved again on June 6— 
D-day in northern France. By the time the Division sailed for 
its fourth invasion— southern France— it had already completed 
271 days in the line. With other units of the Seventh Army, it 
rolled up the Rhone Valley and into the Vosges Mountains, 
where it ran into tough enemy opposition. Then it fought its 
way into the heart of Germany. Under the command of Major 
General Robert T. Frederick, one of the youngest division com- 
manders in the Army, who was wounded nine times in battle, 
the veteran Thunderbirds took city after city, including the sup- 
posedly by-passed Aschaffenburg, whose fanatical defenders, 
including young boys and girls, put up some of the bitterest 
resistance the 45th had ever encountered. The Nazi shrine at 
Niirnberg and the Nazi hell at Dachau were next, and the 45th 
climaxed its long months of service by marching triumphantly 
into Munich. The soldiers who had had to stop wearing the 
swastika had evened things up after 511 days of front-line 
combat, by conquering the birthplace of the movement that 
shamed it. 


63d Infantry Division 

At the Casablanca Conference, early in 1943, the Allies 
vowed to make their enemies "bleed and burn in expiation of 
their crimes against humanity." That struck the men of the 63d 
Division, when their outfit was activated the following June, as 
an estimable idea, and the division promptly adopted the venge : 
ful nickname "Blood and Fire." 

After a year and a half of training in the States, the 63d 
sailed for Europe to do what it could about helping to carry out 
the Casablanca promise. Late in 1944, the men who wear the 
blood-tipped dagger thrust into the German lines for the first 

The first fight of one regiment— the 254th Infantry— was 
especially notable. Attached to the 3d Infantry Division during 
the fierce struggle for the Colmar bridgehead on the Seventh 
Army front from January 22 to February 6, the whole regiment 
was among units cited for outstanding performance of duty in 
that sector. Struggling forward through knee-deep snow that 
concealed deadly land mines, the 254th helped to cut off Colmar 
from the Rhine in what was officially described as "one of the 
hardest fought and bloodiest campaigns of the war." 

In February, with the whole Division reassembled, the 63d 
crossed the Saar north of Sarreguemines and led the Seventh 
Army back onto German soil, from which it had been forced to 
pull back, and the Division captured the fortress town of Om- 


mersheim, A few weeks later, the 63d led the Army into the 
lower Siegfried Line on a two-mile front, just south of Saar- 

Early in April, the Blood-and-Fire men destroyed the 17th 
SS Division, fought through the Hardthauser Woods, crossed 
the Neckar River, and forced the enemy to retreat to new posi- 
tions south of the Kocher River, 

Then when the Germans in the south began to fall back in 
disorganization, the 63d was one of the outfits that pursued them 
relentlessly, striking at the near-beaten enemy forces. It chased 
the Germans through Wiirttemberg and Bavaria down to the 
Danube, crossing the river at Giinzburg and going on down to 
Landsberg, at the edge of the Bavarian Alps. 

The Germans, who were great ones for burning books, al- 
ways regarded Heidelberg as their principal seat of learning. It 
was thus perhaps only justice that the "Blood-and-Fire" Division 
should have been the American outfit that fought its way into 
the university city and captured it at the end of March. 

Funny thing, too: there wasn't a single book deliberately 


65th Infantry Division 

The "Battle-Axe" Division was forged in August 1943, and 
sharpened for nearly two years. Then, on March 7, 1945, it was 

Sent into action on the Third Army front in Europe, the 65th 
relieved the 26th Division along the Saar River, near Saarlau- 
tern, in an area that ran from Orscholz to Wadgassen. Crossing 
the Saar, the Division swung around the flank of Saarbrtickeri 
and, late in the month, cleaned up pockets south and west of 
that city. Then, moving behind speeding armor of the Third 
Army, the 65th mopped up at Altengottern and at Langensalza, 
ten miles north of Gotha. 

Moving to the east, the Battle-Axe outfit added Hohenfals 
and Struth to its bag. Near Strath, at the town of Dorna, one 
11-man group of 65th soldiers, hopelessly surrounded and ter- 
rifically outnumbered, won themselves a place in the Division's 
history by turning the tables on the Nazis who finally captured 
them and, before they were through, capturing 150 Germans 
themselves and killing another 25. 

Just before V-E Day, the 65th claimed the distinction of hav- 
ing made the fardiest penetration into enemy territory of any 
Infantry unit on the Western Front—when a patrol of the Intel- 
ligence and Reconnaissance Platoon of its 259th Infantry, on 
May 7, crossed the Ems River at Kronstorf and proceeded on to 
Unterwinden and Haag, in Austria. 


Up to then, the 65th had been extremely active. Moving 
forward with the Third Army, the Battle-Axers had plunged 
across the Danube at Kelheim and joined the American forces 
assaulting the city of Regensburg. When the garrison at Regens- 
burg finally gave up, it surrendered to the 65th. The Division 
moved on then into the Bavarian Redoubt, and took Passau and 
Neumarkt. On the afternoon of V-E Day, fittingly, the Battle- 
Axers met the Russians. Finally, the Division moved to Linz, 
Austria, under a separate occupation agreement. 


66th Infantry Division 


That being the most popular French designation for German 
soldiers, it must have pleased the French to see the way the 66th 
"Black Panther" Infantry Division handled the 50,000 Nazi 
troops trapped in the St. Nazaire and Lorient pockets. 

Given the job of containing these Nazi fighters, the 66th 
Doughboys penned them in exactly as if they were a herd of 
swine. The 66th was assigned this important, if not glamorous, 
mission late in December of 1944, and it stayed on the job until 
V-E Day. During that time the 50,000 Nazis, all members of 
crack outfits, made many efforts to break from the trap, but were 
beaten back by the men and steel of the Black Panthers. 

The frustrated Nazis and the Doughs of the 66th had many 
sharp patrol clashes, and there were frequent artillery duels. But 
the Nazis stayed put, and few, if any of them managed to escape 
to fight in the defense of the Reich. 

The Nazi troops surrendered to the 66th on May 8, 1945. By 
this surrender the 66th not only took the arms from the 50,000 
Nazis, but liberated 856 square miles of France, and freed 180,- 
000 civilians who had been held as prisoners by the Germans. 

Following V-E Day the Black Panthers were again given a 
thankless, but very vital job. The Division was assigned to guard 
three staging areas, including the great port of Marseille. It was 


the job of the Black Panthers to see that the ports of embarka- 
tion, from which American troops flowed toward home and the 
Pacific, were kept running smoothly during the era of redeploy- 


69th Infantry Division 

From the moment the Allies landed on the smoking beaches 
of Normandy on June 6, 1944, everyone knew what one of their 
principal objectives was— to slash deep into Germany itself and 
cut the Nazis' defenses in two by joining hands with the Russian 
armies driving from the eastern front. 

More than ten months later, on April 25, 1945, the dream 
came true. 

A patrol of the 69th Division-the "Fighting Sixty-ninth" of 
this war— jumping from the Division's positions on the Mulde 
River across the Elbe, climbed to the top of an old tower at 
Torgau, on the west bank of the Elbe, and saw some Russian 
soldiers across the river. 

A few minutes later American and Russian hands were 
clasped halfway across a battered bridge that spanned the river, 
and official contact had been made between the two Allies. 

There were other meetings with the Russians by other men 
of the Fighting Sixty-ninth, but Torgau was dubbed the "offi- 
cial" junction. The Division itself will probably never stop argu- 
ing as to which of its units first joined up with the Red Army— 
but no other division can dispute that honor with the 69th. 

The "Fighting Sixty-ninth" first saw action on March 8, in 
the Siegfried Line, when two regiments crashed the fortified line 
on a 2,000-yard front. The Doughboys of the 69th took 200 
prisoners on their first day in combat, and shortly captured 


Rescheid, Jamberg, Dickeerschied, and Honningen, among 
other towns. That was the official start of the battle for the 69th, 
but many weeks earlier, while the Division was waiting in 
France for its chance to show its stuff, four members of the 69th's 
quartermaster company had made an unofficial start when, on a 
routine trip to Reims for supplies, they had bagged some Ger- 
mans hiding out in a French farmhouse. 

At the junction of the Moselle and Rhine Rivers, the 69th 
took the ancient fortress of Ehrenbreitstein, but their first im- 
portant victory was at Leipzig. There, on April 19, the 69th, 
along with the 11th Armored Division, finally forced the- sur- 
render of fanatical German defenders who fought a last bloody 
stand at the base of Napoleon's monument until they were 
blasted out by heavy fire from self-propelled guns. 

There are many high points in the 69th's combat chronicle— 
the capture intact of a 70-ton bridge across the Weser River, and 
the occupation of dozens of small German towns like Nissmitz 
and Fiirstenwalde and Maidenbressen, for instance— but until 
something better comes along the Fighting Sixty-ninth, and the 
Russians who held the other side of the Elbe, will always put 
Torgau at the top of their list. 

April 25 was really a red-letter day. 


70th Infantry Division 

The Doughboys of the 70th ("Trailblazer") Infantry Division 
wear an axe blade on their shoulder patch, and they were axe- 
men to the Wehrmacht in Europe. 

From the time they plunged into the European conflict in 
December 1944, until the Nazi capitulation, the Trailblazers 
never took a backward step. One of the Division's memorable 
moments came less than two months after its men had landed 
at Marseille. In February, working in concert with other 
Seventh Army outfits along the Alsace-Lorraine border, the 
Trailblazers launched a drive that culminated in the capture of 
Spicheren Heights, known to Nazis as "Hitler's Holy Ground." 

It was at this point, a famous spot in the Franco-Prussian 
War of 1870, that Hitler first set foot in France following his 
accession to power. On Christmas Day, during the "phony war" 
of 1939, Der Fuhrer cautiously advanced a few yards into 
France and spoke a few words to his followers. 

Spicheren Heights overlook the town of Styring-Wendel. In 
liberating this French city, the Trailblazers also freed nearly 
1,000 Allied prisoners of war, predominantly Russian, but in- 
cluding Poles, French, Czechs, and Yugoslavs. This was one of 
the first, if not the first, deliverances of Allied POWs on the 
Western Front. 

Early in March, a resumption of the offensive carried the 


70th to the south bank of the Saar River, and two of its Infantry 
regiments— the 276th and 274th— claim the honor of having first 
put men across the vital stream. On March 20 the city of Saar- 
brucken fell to the 275th Infantry. At the same time the remain- 
ing Trailblazer units swarmed through the formidable Siegfried 
Line defenses along the north bank of the Saar to take Volkingen 
and other important Saarland cities and towns. 

Late in March advance elements of the 70th met men of the 
26th Infantry Division and effected their junction with the Third 

The Trailblazers first saw combat on December 28, 1944, 
when the three regiments were committed in defensive positions 
along the west bank of the Rhine in northern Alsace. Once in 
the line, the Doughs of the 70th took part in some of the bitterest 
actions of that portion of the German offensive ( simultaneous 
with the Ardennes breakthrough) which saw the Nazis attempt 
to drive south from the Bitche sector in the hope of cutting off 
the entire Seventh Army, west of the Saverne Pass. 

In this action, it was often a battle by battalions. 

At Wingen, a village in the mountains south of Bitche, Trail- 
blazers surrounded and sealed off 1,000 SS troops, and cleaned 
them out in a hard three-day battle. This broke the point of the 
northern prong of the German drive. The men who did this job 
were men who had been on European soil less than a month. 

After the reduction of the Saar Basin, troops of the 70th en- 
gaged in occupational duties at Otterberg, Bad Kreuznach, 
Frankfurt, and Oranienstein, near Limburg-on-Lahn. 


71st Infantry Division 

"Travel with us and meet everyone in Europe." 

That was the slogan of the 71st Infantry Division when V-E 
Day came around. 

One of the most popular pastimes of the 71st Doughs was 
trying to figure out just where they had been, and under what 
commands they had served. 

When the 71st reached France in February 1945, it was with 
the Seventh Army. It then was switched to the Fifteenth Army, 
and later served with the Third Army. It was with the XV Corps 
and the XXII Corps. As one GI quipped, "We just missed the 
K-9 Corps." 

In its time in action the 71st served alongside the 100th, 42d, 
44th, 3d, 104th, 26th, and 5th Infantry Divisions, and the 10th 
and 12th Armored outfits. 

The 71st went into action in the bitter cold of March 1945, 
and for 15 days its mission was the destruction of German 
pockets west of the Rhine. When the 71sters hit the Siegfried 
Line, they kept right on going, breaching the famed defense 
wall to capture Pirmasens. When the Doughs swept through this 
city they liberated 8,000 slave laborers. 

The 71st then drove across the Hardt Mountains and the 
Rhine plains, and cleaned up Nazi resistance on the west bank 
of the Rhine near Ludwigshaf en and Speyer. 

One of the most important achievements of the 71st was the 


cutting of the Berlin-Munich highway, main escape route from 
the capita] of the Bavarian mountains. It was in this drive that 
the 71st bagged upwards of 30 German generals. 

The Division crossed the Danube in assault boats at several 
places east of Regensburg. It was in on the capture of Mann- 
heim, aiding the 44th Division. This city fell when, after mili- 
tary officials had refused to heed the mayor's request that the 
city yield to the Americans, the Yanks turned 26 battalions of 
artillery fire on the place. 

On V-E Day the 71st was south of Linz, Austria, on the Enns 
River, and later it moved to Augsburg, Germany. 


75th Infantry Division 

The Germans couldn't have been blamed if they had thought 
the American Array had at least two 75th Divisions. 

The 75th— there was only one— bounded back and forth so 
much along the European battlefront from January to May 1945, 
that observing its progress was a good deal like watching a lively 
tennis match. 

Reaching the European Theater in November 1944, nine- 
teen months after its activation, the 75th began fighting on Jan- 
uary 1 in the Battle of the Bulge, and stayed in action there for 
26 cold and bitter days. Crossing the Salm River, the 75th 
moved into the north flank of the Ardennes salient in Belgium, 
cleared Salmchateau and Bech, and helped take the important 
bastion of Vielsalm. The Division also was one of the American 
outfits that fought at St.Vith. 

The 75th swept down to the Seventh Army front, in the 
Colmar-Breisach area. At the end of January, the Division was 
busily engaged in that part of Alsace, where it eliminated a 
pocket of resistance between Colmar and the Rhine. 

By March 1 the 75th was up north again, in defensive posi- 
tions on the west bank of the Maas River in Holland. On March 
7th-there they go again-the Division jumped from Venlo, Hol- 
land, to Bryell, Germany. After much patrol activity east of the 
Rhine, the 75th crossed the river on March 24, and a week later 
launched its first big attack on the other side. 


From then on, the much-travelled 75th fought in the Hotten- 
Grandmenil sector, took Witten, and conducted extensive mop- 
ping-up operations in the north corner of the Ruhr pocket, at 
Eckern and other points. 

On V-E Day the 75th was at Liitgen, Germany, and shortly 
thereafter it set up occupation headquarters at Werdohl. Later 
it moved out to operate an assembly area for other troops being 
returned to the United States. 


76th Infantry Division 

In the Army, a holiday can't often be celebrated in the orthodox 
way, but sometimes it's a pretty special day anyhow. For the 
"Liberty Bell" Division, for instance, Thanksgiving in 1944 will 
always have great significance. It was on that day that the 76th, 
after 29 months' training in the U. S., finally pushed off for 

The 76th was the first Allied division to enter Germany via 
Luxembourg. In February 1945, the men who sometimes, jok- 
ingly referring to the design of their shoulder patch, call them- 
selves the "Bell Telephone" outfit, went into action. (Actually, 
the three-pronged "label" on the 76th's insignia is a replica of a 
medieval design used to indicate the eldest son of a family.) 
Near Bitburg, Germany, on the Third Army front, they cleared 
the east bank of the Priim River, went south to take Irrel, 
Wolsfeld, and Alsdorf, and then drove a salient across the high- 
way linking Bitburg with Trier and contributing greatly to 
Trier's ultimate capture. 

Joining up with the 10th Armored Division, the Liberty Bells 
made two crossings of the Moselle River, pushing to 17 miles 
northwest of Trier, and adding such towns as Butzweiler, Bins- 
feld, Herscherforst, and Arrenrath to their bag. Near Kamburg, 
the 76th reached the Saale River, and went across it to clear the 
city of Zeitz (population 30,000), 20 miles southwest of Leipzig, 
Then came a mission of mercy— the rescue of Allied prisoners 


penned in at the Konigstein Fortress. As the winter drew on, 
the Division found itself mixed up in some heavy fighting. In 
one sector, 3,000 meters square, the 76th cleaned out a total of 
131 enemy pillboxes. 

Toward the end of the war the Liberty Bells fought in the 
Gera area and, just before V-E Day, established a bridgehead 
across the Mulde River. By that time, the 76th had taken 33,000 

When American forces began to pull back out of occupied 
territory assigned to the Russians, the 76th was the first division 
to make such a withdrawal, retiring from Chemnitz to the west 
bank of the Mulde and taking up positions south and west of 
Zwichau. By July, the Division was on guard duty at Hoff. 


77th Infantry Division 

General Douglas MacArthur, an old football player himself, 
gave the job of pulling the Statue of Liberty play on the Japs 
at Leyte to the outfit best fitted to execute it— the 77th Infantry 
Division, whose men carry Miss Liberty on their shoulders. 

In one of the most daring operations of the Pacific War- 
General Walter Krueger, Sixth Army commander, admitted that 
it might have turned into an "American Dunkirk"— the Statue of 
Liberty Division made a landing behind the main Japanese de- 
fense line on Ormoc Bay. 

Striking shortly after dawn, three years to the day after Pearl 
Harbor, the Doughboys of the 77th caught the Japs completely 
by surprise, and, in the heavy battles which followed, broke the 
back of the enemy defense of Leyte. 

Ground opposition was light in the initial stages of the land- 
ing, but heavy Japanese air attacks pounded the Doughboys the 
first few nights. Three days later Ormoc, hub of the Nip defense, 
was captured, and the 77th pushed on against heavy opposition 
to join other elements of the X Corps. This junction ended or- 
ganized Jap resistance, and on Christmas Day, 1944, the island 
was declared secure. 

With the Guam and Leyte campaigns under its belt, the 77th 
could have been excused for thinking it had seen Pacific fighting 
at its roughest. But the worst was yet to come. From Leyte, the 
77th plunged into the savage, bloody battle for Okinawa, right 


in the Jap's front yard. Here trie Doughs of the 77th ran into 
the heaviest artillery fire of the Pacific war. They were plastered 
day and night by field pieces of all sizes. The enemy's pillboxes 
were superior to any he had used at Tarawa and Saipan. And 
facing the Division's front was Shuri, central fortress of the Jap 
defense line on southern Okinawa. Innumerable ridges, all of 
which bristled with Nip defenses, blocked the way to the high 
ground commanding Shuri. The Doughs, working with tanks, 
flamethrowers, and dynamite charges, finally dislodged the en- 
emy, but not without heavy losses. 

The 77th was also given the job of taking Ie Shima, tiny 
island of the Ryukyu group. It proved to be just as mean as 
Okinawa. The Japs managed to survive the terrific naval and 
air bombardment that preceded the landing of the Statue of 
Libertymen, and when the Doughs hit the beaches charged 
from their caves and tunnels. 

It was on Ie Shima that Ernie Pyle, most beloved of cor- 
respondents, was killed. He went ashore with the 77th Division 
to record the agonies of the foot soldier, and was killed by ma- 
chine-gun fire. 

The 77th began its fight against the Japs in July 1944 when 
it landed on Orote Peninsula, Guam, and relieved the 4th Mar- 
ines. Within 8 days, the Division had occupied the eastern 
beaches, and followed up by capturing Yona, San Antonio, and 
Barrigada. The Division was in action 21 days and advanced 
18 miles against a trapped and desperate enemy. 


78th Infantry Division 

You will never convince a surviving member of the late 
Wehrmacht that lightning can't strike twice. 

He knows it can, because he and his fellow Nazi soldiers 
were struck again and again by the 78th ( "Lightning" ) Infantry 

It was in the morning mist of March 8, 1945, that the 78th, 
made up chiefly of men from Ohio, Illinois, Pennsylvania, and 
New York, struck its most brilliant blow. While tracer bullets 
ripped the air in wild zig-zag patterns, shells splashed against 
the abutments, and flying metal ricocheted off steel girders, 
Lightning Doughboys crossed the Ludendorff Bridge at Rema- 
gen— and earned the honor of being the first infantry division 
troops to span the Rhine. 

The crossing marked an important turning point in the war 
against Germany. The "impregnable" Siegfried Line had been 
torn open; the German defenses along the Roer had been 
smashed, and the stage was set for the final, crushing blow of 
the Allied offensive. 

It was fitting that the 78th— the Division which, by its capture 
of Schwammenauel Dam, had made possible the great drive to 
the Rhine— was the first to cross the Nazis' last great natural 

The capture of the dam played a tremendous part in enabl- 
ing the Allies to move onto the offensive after Rundstedt's 
mighty counteroffeiisive had failed. Its 22,000,000,000 gallons 
of water, once unleashed by the German demolitions, would be 
sufficient not only to submerge and destroy all the towns along 
the Roer from Heimbach to Doermund, but to sweep away like 
matchsticks men and equipment in a river-crossing operation. 
Its capture was imperative. 


The 78th took the dam, but only after one of the fiercest 
battles of the war. The attack was launched in mid-winter, with 
the men ploughing through waist-deep snowdrifts. Fortified 
positions and pillboxes studded the path to the dam. The Infan- 
trymen worked 100 yards behind the artillery as it smacked at 
some of the heaviest fortifications in Germany. The 78th Doughs 
worked from town to town, and the fight in each one was the 
same. They moved from hedgerow to hedgerow, from cellar to 
cellar, from rubble heap to rubble heap. The final city assaulted 
was the much-attacked, never captured stronghold of Schmidt. 
The Lightnings thrust aside their weariness. The prize was only 
a few miles beyond Schmidt. The Lightnings fought their way 
through savage fire to the dam. While the fight raged unabated, 
engineers explored the dam for demolitions, knowing that 
22,000,000,000 gallons of water were straining against the struc- 
ture and that even as they searched a fuse might be burning 
toward a charge. The dam was taken intact. 

Following seizure of the dam, the Division received a com- 
mendation from Major General G. R. Huebner, V Corps com- 
mander, which stressed the strategic importance of the accom- 
plishment "without which further contemplated winter 
operations against the enemy on the northern front would have 
been impossible." 

The Lightnings, who did not go overseas until October 1944, 
got their first crack at the Germans in early December, when 
they went in the line nine miles southeast of Aachen. Their first 
take-off was against the Siegfried Line. Their mission was to take 
the towns of Bickerath, Rollesbroich, Simmerath, Witzfall, and 
Kesternich-all lying within the belt of fortifications. By night- 
fall all but Kesternich had fallen. Three days of furious fighting 
ensued before this key town capitulated. It was near Kesternich 
that 70 men of the 310th Regiment were trapped in a cellar. 
They refused to surrender. Nearly every man in the Division- 
including cooks and clerks-volunteered to go to their rescue, 
and one group of cooks made several valiant attempts and almost 
turned the trick. Finally, a patrol reached the trapped men and 
got them out. 

The 78th was in action only a short time, but the men who 
wear the lightning on their shoulder proved to the world that 


they were worthy successors to the men of the 78th in World 
War I, who performed so brilliantly in the St. Mihiel drive and 
the great Meuse-Argonne offensive. 


79th Infantry Division 

The symbol of the Fighting French was the Cross of Lorraine. 

And in the summer of 1944 many a Frenchman was freed 
from the bondage of Naziism by the Americans who wear that 
cross— the 79th Infantry Division. 

There were cheers, and flowers, and wine for all the liberat- 
ing GIs of all our Divisions in Europe, but no outfit was ever 
more warmly greeted by a whole country than was the 79th by 
the grateful citizens of Cherbourg, La Haye-du-Puits, Lessay, 
Le Mans, Avranches, Reims, Charmes, Luneville, and a dozen 
other cities on the division's long path of liberation. 

The Cross of Lorraine was first carried ashore at Utah Beach 
on American shoulders on D-plus-6. Four months later, a Ger- 
man division, in an order to its subordinate units, warned them 
to watch out for the 79th— "one of the best attack divisions in the 
U. S. Army." 

That had been true in World War I, when the 79th stormed 
Montfaucon and, in 30 hours of hellish fighting, had started the 
Kaiser's armies on their way to defeat. 

And it became equally evident in World War II as soon as 
the 79th was given its first important mission: a major share in 
the assault on Cherbourg. While its 314th Infantry Regiment 
scaled the tough sides of Fort du Roule, on the outskirts of the 
port, patrols of the 313th sneaked into the city and later the rest 
of the regiment followed up, smashing through Cherbourg 


street by street and house by house, and winning for the 
Division the proud right to claim— First in Cherbourg. 

Cherbourg surrendered on July 26 and the next day the 79th, 
having tasted only briefly the fruits of liberation, was on its way 
to La Haye-du-Puits, nerve center of the German supply system 
for the enemy forces in northern France. Through hedgerows 
honeycombed with artillery and automatic weapons, and de- 
spite dug-in enemy tanks raking them at pointblank range, the 
Cross of Lorraine men swarmed into the town and took it on 
July 8. They headed south through Avranches and Fougeres, 
and southeast to Le Mans, where, after bridging the Sarthe 
River, they helped to close the Falaise pocket. 

Swinging east, the 79th raced ahead of all other forces 
toward the Seine, reaching it at the ruined city of Mantes- 
Gassicourt. No other American outfit reached the Seine as soon, 
and the 79th, by getting there and holding the rubble of Mantes- 
Gassicourt, greatly facilitated the liberation of Paris. The 
Germans were stunned by this swift dash of the Cross of 
Lorraine; they thought at first that the 79th had suddenly be- 
come airborne and had been dropped near the Seine. Recover- 
ing from their surprise they hit the Division with Nebelwerfers 
and a revived Luftwaffe, but it didn't get them anywhere. 

Shifted to the First Army front in Belgium, the 79th set off 
in high gear and in 72 hours had crossed the Somme and was 
ready to fight in Belgium, 180 miles away, after making what a 
corps commander called "one of the fastest opposed advances of 
comparable distance by an infantry division in warfare." Later 
the Cross of Lorraine was shifted far to the south, on the Seventh 
Army flank, and fought at the Meurthe River, in the Foret de 
Parroy, in the city of Luneville, and across the Rhine deep into 

After the 79th had driven the Germans out of their positions 
in the Saverne Gap and Sarrebourg, late in 1944, General Patch 
told the division, "You have achieved a significant victory. I 
have full confidence in your ability to continue your relentless- 
pursuit until the final victory." 

That was just what the 79th did. 


80th Infantry Division 

"You can't say too much for them. 

That was the tribute "brass" paid to the 80th Infantry 
Division Doughboys after they had broken through a ring of 
German lead and steel to help rescue the 101st Airborne Divi- 
sion, never-say-die defenders of Bastogne. 

Christmas Day, side by side with tanks of the 4th Armored, 
Infantrymen of the "Blue Ridge" Division began to batter for- 
ward toward the besieged 101st. Through murderous opposi- 
tion, over frozen, snow-crusted terrain, they bent their heads 
to bullet and blizzard, and advanced 9 miles. Next day the gap 
between rescuers and trapped was reduced to 4,000 yards. A 
Blue Ridge patrol, working at night, slipped through the Nazi 
lines to meet up with an outpost of the 101st, and gather infor- 
mation concerning German strength and displacement. 

With this information, the Doughs of the 80th and the 4th 
tankers, drove forward, scorning withering artillery, Nebel- 
werfer, and small-arms fire. They chased the Germans from 
ridge to ridge, from pillbox to pillbox and, on December 28, 
knifed through to the lines of the 101st. Relief of Bastogne was 
completed, Rundstedt's hope for a major breakthrough was 
finished, and the men of the 80th could proudly reassert their 
motto: "Ever Forward." 

It was no untried division that achieved the drive to Bas- 
togne. The 80th had been in action since it landed on Utah 


Beach, in France, early in August. A few days after it hit France,' 
the 80th began fighting at Le Mans, and aided in stemming the 
powerful armored counterattack by five panzer divisions which 
sought to cut the Third Army's supply line at Avranches. 

Under new orders, the Blue Ridgers were thrown into the 
battle of the Argentan-Falaise Gap. 

They were told to take Argentan and the high ground north 
of the city. This strongpoint was held by a panzer division, a 
Luftwaffe battalion, and Storm Troopers supported by artillery 
and numerous self-propelled guns. Just before midnight of 
August 19, the city was blasted by artillery. The Blue Ridgers 
stormed into the burning objective. Surging north from this 
point, the Doughs of the Blue Ridge had a field day mopping 
up the wreckage of the once proud German Seventh Army. 

After this hard blow to the Wehrmacht, the Division once 
again became a part of the Third Army, swung south of Paris 
and spearheaded the Allied drive across France. 

The Blue Ridgers crossed the Meuse and, with history re- 
peating itself, rolled into St.Mihiel where, 26 years ago, dur- 
ing the same month, the World War I 80th had fought. Ahead 
was the heavily fortified Moselle River. Loading on a small 
stream that runs into the Moselle, the 80th crossed without a 
shot being fired, and the Third Army's spearhead was ready to 
run wild. In the later stages of this battle the 80th's artillery 
commander, Brigadier General Edmund W. Searby, was killed 
while fighting in the front line with the Doughboys. 

In November of 1944, the 80th attacked the Maginot Line. 
Before its men were relieved by the 6th Armored Division 
forward elements of the 80th had penetrated the German fron- 
tier less than five miles from Saarbriicken. 

After 102 days of contact with the enemy, the Blue Ridgers 
were withdrawn on December 7 for a rest. 
Then came Bastogne. 

True to their motto, the men of the 80th moved "Ever For- 


81st lnfantry|Division 

Wildcat Creek, a tiny stream that flows through Fort Jackson, 
South Carolina, inspired the first shoulder patch to be worn by 
any division in the United States Army. 

The 81st Infantry Division took its nickname from the creek, 
and, when it sailed for France in 1918, its men wore a cloth 
patch on their left shoulders featuring a silhouette of a wildcat 
on an olive drab circle. 

The patch caused much comment by men of other divisions, 
and they questioned the right of the Doughboys of the 81st thus 
to distinguish themselves. The matter was finally brought to the 
attention of General John J. Pershing, and "Black Jack," after 
an investigation, ruled that the Wildcat Division could keep its 
patch, and suggested that all other units adopt distinctive in- 

The Wildcats fought with honor against the Germans, and 
a generation later the fighting men of the new 81st Division 
were clawing at the Japanese in the Pacific. 

The World War II Wildcats began their drive against the 
Japanese in September of 1944. After training in Oahu and the 
Solomon Islands, the Wildcats sailed for their first combat mis- 
sion—the capture of Angaur Island in the Palaus. They stormed 
ashore on September 17, and the conquest of Angaur was 
speedily accomplished as troops drove through Japanese de- 
fenses to the western shore, cutting the island in two and driv- 


ing the enemy into isolated pockets of resistance. Angaur was 
declared secure on September 20, and mopping-up operations 
began on the remnants of the Japanese garrison which had for- 
tified itself for a death stand on the high ground in the northwest 
corner of the island. 

After 35 consecutive days of steady fighting, the last Jap- 
anese cave was entered, and every Jap on the island was a 
dead Jap. 

Elements of the 81st Division were with the 1st Marine Divi- 
sion in the assault on Peleliu Island, and fought alongside the 
Leathernecks in the bloody and costly battle for this rocky 
Pacific pile. On Peleliu, the Japs literally had to be rooted from 
their deep caves on the precipitous slopes of the jagged cliffs. 
The Wildcats scaled the slopes to get at the Nips with bayonets, 
grenades, and dynamite charges, all the while undergoing mer- 
ciless machine-gun and mortar fire, 

The Wildcats mopped up Ngesebus, Kongaru, and Garakayo 
Islands. They made the first landing on Ulithi, later the Navy's 
huge Pacific fleet base. 

In all these operations the Wildcats killed 5,676 Japanese 
and took 344 Japs and Koreans prisoner. 

In the summer of 1945, the 81st moved to the central Philip- 
pines. And later on up into Japan, the end of a long road. 


82nd Airborne Division 

Doting the last war, a sergeant named Alvin York— while his 
Division and the 28th were going to the rescue of the Lost Bat- 
talion of the 77th-captured 132 Germans and made himself and 
his outfit, the 82nd Infantry Division, known to all Americans. 
The "All-American" Division began this war as an Infantry 
Division, too, under the leadership of General Omar Bradley, 
but on August 15, 1942, it was redesignated the 82nd Airborne 
Division and began training for the special role it was to play 
in Allied operations in Sicily, Italy, France, Holland, Belgium, 
and Germany. 

The 82nd left the United States in April 1943, and sailed for 
Casablanca, where it trained while the Tunisian campaign was 
drawing to a close. The Sicilian campaign was the first one in 
which an entire airborne division-the 82nd-was scheduled to 
take part. The mission started tragically, and momentarily 
jeopardized the future of all airborne operations, when several 
of the planes, slightly off course and the victims of faulty recog- 
nition signals, were fired upon by friendly antiaircraft gunners, 
with substantial casualties in planes and men. 

On June 9, 1943, the 505th Regimental Combat Team, rein- 
forced, tumbled out over Sicily at midnight. The rest of the 
All- Americans were held in reserve. It was a tough job, but 
doubly so that night. Tricky winds played hob with aerial navi- 
gation. Parachutists scattered along a 50-mile stretch. After 


landing, and for the next few days, the airborne troops fought 
a slashing guerrilla action, ferreting out and destroying German 
and Italian forces. Scattered throughout the lines of the British 
Army, some All-Americans helped take Comiso, Noto, and 
Ragusa. Fighting as they went, the men of the 82nd reassembled 
by foot, mule, bicycle, and truck. 

In September of 1943 elements of the 82nd blossomed out 
over Salerno behind the enemy lines and, by effective operations 
in the rear, seriously disrupted the movement of enemy sup- 
plies to the beachhead area. Later the All~American units 
swung over to protect the east flank of the Fifth Army, and when 
the rest of that Army marched into Naples, three weeks after the 
landings, the 82nd proudly led the way. 

Shifted back to England for rigorous pre-invasion training, 
the 82nd's next combat mission was its most important of all. 
Stars blinked overhead on the morning of June 6, 1944, when, 
hours before the Normandy invasion proper began, parachutists 
of the 82nd fell into hedgerows from Cherbourg to the deep 
mainland. In two days the Division had captured three towns 
and crossed the Merderet River. In six more days the 82nd 
had taken Ham, thus ensuring the security of the beachhead, 
and had set the stage for the capture of the Cherbourg peninsula. 
Although airborne operations are normally short, the Division 
official history reads: ". . . 35 days of action without relief, with- 
out replacements . . . every mission accomplished ... no ground 
gained ever relinquished . . ." One company came out of the 
line with 16 men, and most of the Division units were cited for 
their work. 

Two months later, under 38-year-old Major General James 
M. Gavin, parachute and glider Infantrymen of the 82nd struck 
again, in the Nijmegen section of Holland, preventing the Ger- 
mans from breaking through at the Maas River, and endanger- 
ing Allied operations in that area. Following the Division's 
work in Holland, Lieutenant General Sir Miles C. Dempsey, 
British Second Army commander, paid this tribute to General 
Gavin and his men: "I'm proud to be commanding general of 
the greatest Division in the world today." 

Von Rundstedt launched his great counteroffensive. To Di- 
vision headquarters came a request from SHAEF: Gould the 


Division move out in 24 hours and get close to Bastogne? 
Twenty-three hours later the 82nd was in position 150 miles 
away, moved by truck. A prime German objective was Liege. 
The Ail-Americans were asked to hold an area southwest of the 
town. They held it a week against overwhelming odds. Another 
mission was to help provide a withdrawal route for the 28th and 
106th divisions which had been cut off. They provided the 
escape route. In January of 1945 the 82nd hit the Siegfried 
Line and cracked it three days later. As the war ended, it was 
fighting with the British Second Army at Wittenburg, and sub- 
sequently it followed the 2d Armored Division into Berlin. 


83d Infantry Division 

Thebe was a colonel at the fortress of St.Malo— the one they 
called the "Mad Colonel"— who didn't want to surrender, and to 
the east there were 20,000 armed German soldiers of every rank 
who didn't want to surrender, either. That is, they didn't want 
to until the 83d Division came along. Then they had to. 
Colonel Von Aulock was the defiant commander who, in the fall 
of 1944, decided to hold out, and it looked as if he might for an 
indefinite time until the "Thunderbolt" Division laid siege to 
his stronghold and caused him to think better of his initial de- 
cision. A few weeks later, when the Division captured 20,000 
Germans at one swoop in France, while covering the right flank 
of the Third Army in the Loire River Valley, the Thunderbolts 
set a record for the number of prisoners taken by the Allies up 
to that time on the European continent. 

The 83d hoped to get into the battle of Normandy right at 
the start, but rough weather kept it out in the English Channel 
for a week, and it finally hit the beaches on D-plus-12. Plung- 
ing into the hedgerows, it moved inland to the swamps of Car- 
entan, to relieve the 101st Airborne Division which had jumped 
just before H-hour on D-day. On the Fourth of July, the 83d 
launched its first big offensive. With the 9th and 90th Infantry 
Divisions, it broke through to the St.L6-Coutances highway, 
moved early in August by truck to Avranches, and then headed 


west to take care of the stubborn residents of St.Malo, which 
fell on August 17. 

Operating in the Loire Valley from August 22 to September 
20, the 83d covered a 200-mile line from St. Nazaire to Auxerre, 
made a junction with the Seventh Army, and delivered its cele- 
brated haul of 20,000 Supermen to the Allies. Late in Septem- 
ber the division, as part of the Third Army, swung northeast- 
ward for the drive through France and Luxembourg. In Lux- 
embourg, relieving the 5th Armored and 28th Infantry Divi- 
sions, the 83d made a lasting impression on the civilians with 
its lively dance band. It didn't have much time, however, for 
rest or frivolity. Early in December it was moved into the 
Hiirtgen Forest to relieve the 4th Infantry Division, and from 
there it fought its way to the western bank of the Roer, near 
Diiren. And then came the Ardennes counteroffensive. 

Ordered to Rochefort, the 83d found itself fighting in waist- 
high snow. Morphine syrettes froze, automatic weapons 
wouldn't function, and the soldiers of the Division suffered from 
the bitter cold. They stuck to their guns— sometimes literally— 
and helped turn back the enemy assault. A month later they 
were assigned to the Ninth Army and, on March 1, approached 
the Rhine and took Neuss, just outside of Diisseldorf. They 
were credited with being the first American division to reach the 
lower Rhine, and, after patrols had made several crossings of 
the river to prove the enemy defenses on the other side, the 
whole Division swept across on March 30. Given the job of 
cleaning up pockets by-passed by the 2d Armored, the Thunder- 
bolts accomplished that mission and then did some by-passing 
of their own, slicing through the Ruhr Valley and driving for 
the transportation center of Hamm. 

Marching virtually unopposed into the blasted Hamm rail- 
yards, the 83d seized so many abandoned vehicles that it was 
able completely to motorize itself, and it raced east to the 
province of Brunswick, moving so fast with its borrowed trans- 
portation that at one point it outstripped the speedy 2d Arm- 
ored. Swinging southeast, the 83d pushed 215 miles from the 
Rhine to the Elbe, which it reached at Barby, just south of the 
2nd Armored's bridgehead. On its way, the 83d in 14 days 
captured 24,000 Germans and liberated 75,000 Allied prisoners. 


Most of die men of the 83d, when it fought in Italy and 
France in 1918 had originally come from Ohio, and the Divi- 
sion's shoulder patch is a monogram of the letters of that state. 
In this war the Division's personnel has been drawn from all 
over, but the men still like the old patch, and they like to spell 
out the words for which the letters now stand— "One Hot In- 
fantry Outfit." 


84th infantry Division 

When it fought in France during the last war, the 84th 
called itself the "Lincoln" Division. When this war started, 
the men of the outfit were calling themselves the "Railsplitters." 
But not long after they bumped into the German Army on the 
Siegfried Line, the Nazis had a new name for them— and it had 
nothing to do with the biographical background of Abraham 

The Germans called them the Hatchet Men. 

It was November 18, 1944, when the 84th first struck. Only 
a few weeks before it had been in the United States. After 
sailing to England and training at Winchester—where a few 
men were detached to go to the Continent and help speed sup- 
plies over the famous Red Ball Highway— Railsplitters em- 
barked for France and were rushed to the Siegfried Line. Then 
began two months of savage fighting during which the 84th 
took 112 German pillboxes and bunkers in the Siegfried Line, 
and helped to crush Rundstedt's counteroffensive in the Ar- 
dennes. It was as notable a start as any fighting outfit could 
hope to have. 

Assigned to the British Second Army, the 84th set its sights 
upon Geilenkirchen, a mining and transportation center with a 
population of 20,000. The 334th Infantry jumped off first, with 
Prummern as its objective. The regiment was supposed to have 


armored support, but its tanks bogged down in the mud. That 
didn't stop the Doughboys; they went in anyhow. Then the 
333d Infantry joined in the fray, and Geilenkirchen fell on the 
19th shortly followed by Suggerath, Lindern, Beeck, and— in 
one of the war's best examples of infantry-artillery teamwork— 
Leiffarth. As the 84th pushed toward this city, the Infantry 
moved forward confidently a scant 50 yards behind the crash- 
ing shells of its own big guns. Mullendorf was the scene of the 
Railsplitters' last operations in the Siegfried Line sector, and the 
campaign was fittingly concluded when a battalion commander 
strode out of Nazi headquarters puffing a big cigar, with a cap- 
tured swastika slung over his shoulder. 

On January 2, while the German counteroffensive in the 
Ardennes was at its height, the 84th was rushed back to help 
and made a gallant stand south of Marche. With no flank sup- 
port, the Railsplitters held their ground and beat off one fierce 
enemy thrust after another. Shifted later to the north side of 
the German bulge, under the First Army, the Division set off 
a counterattack with the 2nd Armored Division. Snow tempo- 
rarily stopped most of the "Hell on Wheels" tanks, but it couldn't 
stop the Infantry. One bunch of Doughboys—the 1st Battalion 
of the 335th Infantry— made an urgent request for hundreds 
of suits of long winter underwear. Donning these over their 
combat uniforms, they sneaked across the white fields and took 
the enemy completely by surprise. By January 16 the 84th had 
rolled into Houffalize, and on that day, near Ourthe, one of its 
units joined up with the 11th Armored Division— thus officially 
linking the First and Third Annies and closing the gap that had 
separated them in the Ardennes salient. 

Moved secretly to an assembly area in Holland, the Railsplit- 
ters swept across the Roer River on February 23, and then, led 
by a motorized task force built around the 334th Infantry, they 
roared forward— overrunning a German officers' replacement 
pool, not even bothering to stop to take many prisoners, cap- 
turing one city's whole police force intact, taking Dulken, Kre- 
feld, and Moers, and ending up at the Rhine. They almost got 
to the other side via a tunnel connected to a mine shaf t at Hom- 
burg, but the tunnel had been mined. After crossing on the sur- 
face, they went on over the Weser River, took Erbeck, captured 


a Nazi arms factory built 350 feet into the side of a cliff, and 
drove into Hannover. Farther on, at Brunswick, they consoli- 
dated forces with the 5th Armored Division, and the two out- 
fits joined the British to wipe out an enemy pocket along the 
Elbe south of Hamburg. 

After V-E Day, with headquarters at Hannover, the Rail- 
splitters spent weeks trying to help displaced persons get started 
on their way home. 

85th infantry Division 

On April 10, 1944, the Germans who had the job of manning 
defensive positions in the Italian mountains found a new Ameri- 
can outfit deployed against them—the 85th Division. It had 
been called die "Custer" Division ever since 1917, when its 
soldiers trained at Camp Custer, Michigan. By the time the 
85th had bowled over the enemy defenders of the Gustav Line, 
of Rome, of the Arno River, of the Gothic Line, of the Po River, 
and of the Brenner Pass, far to the north, the Germans had a new 
name for the outfit. 

They called it the "Elite Assault" Division. 

In this war, there wasn't any Custer's Last Stand. Time 
after time the 85th found itself fighting against seemingly hope- 
less odds— and there were a few units that had bad luck, like the 
platoon that was found wiped out, with German bodies piled 
up all around it, during the breaching of the Gustav Line— but 
the Division kept on moving slowly forward during the long, 
grim, and sometimes heartbreaking Italian campaign. When it 
added up its prisoners after the Germans surrendered on May 
2, 1945, the total came to 27,429. 

The 85th began to arrive in Italy in the middle of March 
1944, and by the end of the month the Division was assembled 
as a unit. Two weeks later it took over the Allied sector near 
Minturno and found itself playing a prominent part in the Al- 


lied offensive to break through the Gustav Line, made contact 
with our forces hemmed in at Anzio, and raced to Rome. The 
attack began on May 11, and after four days of bitter initiation 
to war, the 85th had beaten off numerous counterattacks and 
had cracked the line. Speeding north, the Division trampled 
over the famed Hermann Goering Panzer Division, and trium- 
phantly entered Rome on June 4. The 85th went right on out 
the other side of the city and pursued the Germans for 40 
miles before being relieved. 

The Custermen had it relatively quiet during the summer, 
but in mid-September they were given the job of hacking away 
at the German positions in the Gothic Line. The towering 
mountains at Altuzzo, Verruca, and Pratone were in their sector, 
and on September 17 Altuzzo, the keystone of the line, had 
fallen to the 85th. Speeding on to the north, the Division 
chased the Germans for 45 days of running fighting, through 
the Santerno River Valley, across many mountains, and onto 
the slopes of Monte Mezzano, at the threshold of the Po Valley. 

Early in 1945, the 85th held the Monte Grande sector of the 
winter defense line, with a crack German parachute division 
facing it. The stalemate was broken on April 18 when the Cus- 
ter men swept through Gesso, Tignano, and Casalecchio, ad- 
vanced into the Po plain, and dashed pell mell through disor- 
ganized enemy formations. The 85th flung itself across the Po 
River, though no bridges were available in its sector, on rafts, 
DUKWs, and anything else that would float. It moved quickly 
through Verona, crossed the now unoccupied Adige Line— last 
German defensive position in Italy— slashed into the Alps, and, 
by sealing off the Brenner Pass, trapped the remnants of the 
German Tenth Army, who surrendered en masse. 

Even after the Germans gave up, the 85th wasn't through. 
Its men uncovered millions of dollars' worth of gold and valu- 
able works of art, and released from imprisonment a group of 
international celebrities the Germans had hidden at Lago di 
Braies, in the Alps, including Martin Niemoller, Leon Blum, 
Kurt Schuschnigg, and Fritz Thyssen. 


86th Infantry Division 

Last in and first out— that was the unique record of the "Black 
Hawk" Division on the Western Front. But the men of the 86th 
didn't expect to be finished with war when, a few weeks after 
V-E Day, they were rushed from Austria to the French coast 
and then to New York, where they were acclaimed on June 17 
as the first division to return from the war. 

There had been a good reason for their speedy homecom- 
ing. They were on their way to Japan. They got there with 
less trouble than they had originally expected; their Pacific job 
turned out to be not battle, but occupation. 

The Black Hawks fought for only 42 days in Europe. But 
during that brief spell of action they earned respect from friend 
and foe alike for their speed, maneuverability, and courage. 
The 86th served under four armies—the Fifteenth, First, Seventh 
and Third— claimed to be the first of all our divisions to cross 
the Danube River, and fought with distinction in mopping-up 
operations in the Ruhr pocket. 

Activated in December 1942, the Black Hawks trained in 
the United States for more than two years, and finally embarked 
for Europe in February 1945. Landing at Le Havre, the 86th 
moved across France and Germany by train and truck, finally 
arriving at Cologne near the end of March. There a few units 
of the Division saw their first action, relieving elements of the 


8th Infantry Division in position along the west bank of the 

Then the Black Hawks moved south along the river, crossing 
it at Bonn, travelling deep into Germany, and taking such towns 
as Ober Veizhelde, Attendorn, and Hohenlimberg, Gosseldorf, 
Weizemburg and Echstatt. At Echstatt, the Black Hawks lib- 
erated a large number of Allied prisoners of war. 

By April 26 the Division had moved to a position just outside 
of Ingolstadt, close to the Danube. Under persistent enemy 
artillery fire, the Black Hawks drove through the city and onto 
the banks of the Danube, spearheading the advance of the 
Third Army on the river. That evening, while American tanks 
lined the river banks and poured shells into the enemy lines 
across the water, and Black Hawk mortars and machine guns 
threw thousands of rounds of steel into the dusk, Doughboys 
of the 86th shoved off from the east side of the Danube and 
secured a bridgehead on the opposite bank. 

The Black Hawks kept pushing forward across the river un- 
til they had established positions, and then they had to fight off 
an enemy counterattack designed to throw them back into the 
water. They held their ground. 

Fighting against Germans who knew the jig was almost up 
but still were determined not to give in without a struggle, and 
against Hungarian Storm Troopers whom the Nazis had thrown 
into the battle, the 86th moved forward through Eitensheim, 
Haag, Altdorf , and Nauhen, in Austria. 

At the end of the war in Europe they were in Perwang, after 
covering ground so rapidly that they left their own kitchens far 
behind. But they were used to that sort of thing. One Black 
Hawk unit had had its chow wagon ambushed in the Ruhr 
pocket. Later, at Ludensheim, they caught up with the Ger- 
mans who had stolen their rations, and found that the enemy 
still had a lot of their stuff with them. The Black Hawks got 
their revenge; they made the Germans eat every bit of the cap- 
tured hoard— everything except the tin boxes it was packed in. 


87th Infantry Division 

The acorn is a traditional symbol of strength, and before the 
wearers of the Golden Acorn were through in Europe they had 
convinced the Germans that the symbolism was more than justi- 
fied. The Division with the slogan "Stalwart and Strong" had 
shown itself to be both. 

Sailing from the United States on November 1, 1944, the 
87th arrived only three weeks later near Metz, on the Third 
Army front, where General Patton planned to give it its baptism 
of fire. But Marshal Von Runstedt changed those plans with 
his counteroffensive. When Patton rushed over to help the 
First Army repel the onslaught, the 87th was one of the divi- 
sions he took with him to smash the drive. They moved close 
to where the battered remnants of the 106th Division were reas- 
sembling. "When we saw what had been done to them," one 
87th man said, "our outfit got together and started working as 
a team." 

By February the 87th was a veteran outfit, used to the tricks 
of the Germans and accustomed to the bitter climatic conditions 
on the winter front. Then the Golden Acorns were picked as 
the spearhead for a Third Army drive toward Luxembourg 
across the Our River. Under heavy fire from the enemy, the 
Doughboys crossed the river and drove forward. 

During the remainder of February and March, the Division 


consolidated its earlier gains and continued to strike lethal 
blows at the enemy. Early in April the 87th launched a new 
major thrust. 

Moving with lightning speed, the Golden Acorns leaped the 
Moselle River and charged down on Coblenz. Before the Ger- 
mans knew what had happened, the city had fallen to the 87th, 
and the Third Army's drive into the heart of the Rhineland had 
started. Reaching the Rhine, the 87th once more was in the 
forefront of battle, and once more it was assigned the job of 
pushing its way across a river. 

This time it wasn't so easy. As the first wave of troops began 
to sneak across on small boats, the Germans on the opposite shore 
threw up flares. By their weird light, the enemy hurled in heavy 
and accurate concentrations of mortar fire on the advancing 
Americans. Casualties were heavy, but the 87th wouldn't stop. 
By grit and courage the Golden Acorn soldiers forced their way 
over the Rhine and pressed forward on the opposite bank. 

The Division took many German cities, and the last of the 
lot was the internationally known sporting resort of Oberhof , 
in the Black Forest, which the 1st Battalion of the 347th In- 
fantry seized just before the war in Europe ended. "We ar- 
rived too late for the skiing and skating," one Golden Acorn 
Doughboy reported mournfully a few days later, "but the shoot- 
ing sure as hell was fine." 


88th Infantry Division 

In Would Wab II towns have been liberated by men in tanks, 
by paratroopers dropping from the sky, by scout car patrols, 
and by jeep, but it remained for the Doughboys of the 88th In- 
fantry Division to do the job by bicycle. 

Shortly before the cessation of hostilies in Italy, the 2nd 
Battalion of the 350th Infantry requisitioned bikes from the 
friendly Italians and, in a "mad" dash from Nogara to San 
Martino, drove the Nazi troops from the last named city and 
liberated its citizens. 

The 88th, whose Doughs wear a blue cloverleaf formed by 
two interlocking 8s on their shoulders, was the first all-Selective- 
Service infantry division committed to combat on any front in 
this war. The Cloverleaf boys got their first taste of action— 
and it was a minor one compared to the battles that were to 
come— when the Division took up positions along the Garigliano 
River in Italy in March 1944. 

This was purely a defensive action, but a week later the 
Division was given the go-ahead signal and launched its assault 
on the Gustav Line. Two days later, despite the most savage 
opposition, the vaunted line was breached, and the Cloverleafs 
were on the road to Rome, close behind the fleeing Nazis. 

The 88th marched into the Eternal City 24 hours after it had 
become the first liberated capital of World War II. A few 


weeks rest in Rome and the 88th was on the move again, tak- 
ing over the missions of the 1st Armored Division, which it had 

This time its goal was the celebrated Gothic Line, and the 
88th drove toward it with a relentlessness that brooked no oppo- 

Now, began the Division's most savage battle. It entered the 
Gothic Line action in September, and during the ensuing 
months suffered its heaviest casualties. It battled unfavorable 
terrain, miserable weather, and a fanatical enemy. But it kept 
punching, punching, to capture Mt. La Fine, Belvedere, Gesso, 
Mt. Acuto, Mt. Capello, Castel del Rio, Mt. Battaglia, and Mt. 
Grande. Mt. Grande was the nearest point to the Po Valley 
reached by any Fifth Army outfit until the spring of the follow- 
ing year. During this drive the 88th was exposed to one of the 
most intense artillery poundings of the entire Italian campaign. 

The 88th was ordered to hold up after the Mt. Grande drive, 
and spent the winter in alternate rest periods and tours in the 
line. Observing its first combat anniversary on March 5, 1945, 
the Division had chalked up an offensive advance of 325 miles, 
captured more than 5,500 prisoners, and destroyed six German 
divisions and badly mauled half a dozen others. 

In April 1945,, die 88th went to work again, this time in the 
North Apennines Po Valley. It took Monterumici, and by the 
end of the month one of its units had entered Verona, key com- 
munication center of the Valley. Not many weeks later it swept 
into Vicenza, and then on to Nogara, from which it made its 
bicycle assault on San Martino. 

When the war ended in Italy, units of the Division were or- 
dered to make contact with the Seventh Army. This was ac- 
complished a few miles south of the Brenner Pass in May 1945. 

During the Po Valley drive the 88th bagged more than 
30,000 prisoners in 16 action-packed days. 


89th Infantry Division 

The shoulder patch of the 89th ("Rolling W") Infantry Di- 
vision is no novelty to the German people. They became ac- 
quainted with it in World War I when the Middle West Divi- 
sion ( invert the "W" and it becomes an "M"— see? ) occupied 
a section of their country very near the area now being patrolled 
by the Doughboys wearing the same insignia. 

The 89th didn't see as much action against the Nazis as the 
Rolling Ws did against the Kaiser s forces, but during the brief 
time its men were in the line they upheld the outfit's slogan "Get 
It Done." Once committed, they really rolled, and by the 
time of Nazi capitulation had advanced a total of 350 miles. In 
this drive the 89th overran scores of Nazi cities, captured more 
than 20,000 prisoners, and held its own casualty figures to less 
than 900. 

The Division left the United States in January 1945, but did 
not enter combat until March 12. It was sent into the line 
near the Sauer River, east of Echternach, and its first shots were 
fired on enemy soil. No battle-hardened troops ever moved any 
faster, or attacked more relentlessly, than did the line com- 
panies of the 89th. In their first three weeks under fire, the 
Rolling W Doughboys advanced some 50 miles to the west bank 
of the Moselle River. On the morning of March 16 the Doughs, 
in assault boats, stormed across the river to establish a bridge- 


head through which the 11th Armored Division passed to begin 
its battle toward the Rhine. 

After clearing an area between the Moselle and Glan Rivers, 
the 89th moved to a new sector for a crossing of the Rhine be- 
tween the towns of Kestert and Kaub. By noon of March 26, 
the Rolling Ws had established three bridgeheads, and within 
a week had completed mopping up in the rough wooded area of 
the "Bingen Bulge." 

Early in April, the 89th moved northeast to start a drive into 

Eisenach was the first city to fall, after a bitter defense by 
SS troops. In the next two weeks the Division moved rapidly 
across central Germany to the Zwick-Mulde River. The 89th 
liberated many Allied prisoners in this advance. At Blanken- 
burg 330 Polish women officers were freed. The capture of 
Zwichau late in April ended the advance, and the Division 
passed to control of the First Army. 

On V-E Day, the Rolling Ws were pushing into Czecho- 


90th Infantry Division 

Before D-D ay in Normandy, the initials T-O on the 90th Di- 
vision's shoulder patch stood for Texas and Oklahoma, home 
states of most of the outfit's personnel in World War I. Not long 
after D-day, to the men who wore them, the initials stood for 
"Tough 'Ombres." 

The 90th didn't land without difficulty. One of its troop- 
ships was sunk in the English Channel, and a battalion of In- 
fantrymen, with a company of engineers, swam and waded 
ashore without weapons to enter the fight for the beachhead. 

After the landings the Tough 'Ombres, previously untried in 
battle, fought for 53 straight days. Their first major task was 
to deepen the wedge driven into France by the aerial assault of 
the 82nd Airborne Division. The 90th saw heavy fighting at 
Pont-l'Abbe, Gourbesville, and Portbail. Then, early in July, 
the Tough 'Ombres went into the misty hell of Foret de Mont 

For three years the Germans had been using Mont Castre 
as a maneuver area, and knew the terrain there intimately. Fur- 
thermore, it was a heavily fortified sector— the strong point in a 
line of outposts before the defense line running eastward from 
Coutances. Facing the Tough 'Ombres were picked German 
paratroopers and SS men. The 90th struck at Mont Castre on 
July 3, and battled there for eight days. Camouflaged enemy 


paratroopers took advantage of the low visibility in the area to 
raise havoc with the Americans, and one unit of the 90th suf- 
fered so heavily that it was compelled to organize a company 
"J" from an old lot of cooks, clerks, and mechanics. 

But the 90th took Mont Castre, and then set off on a new 
mission. Crossing the Selume River and seizing St. Hilaire-du- 
Harcouet, the Division began to close the Falaise pocket, and 
by August 22 the 90th had trapped 12,000 Germans in that sec- 
tor. During that month, too, the 90th Division took Chambois. 

As summer turned into fall, the Division headed east toward 
Metz, taking part in the attack on that fortified city. By early 
1945, the 90th had driven into the Saar, by March it was racing 
down the east bank of the Rhine, had stormed the gates of 
Mainz, and had captured the walled city of Boppard. 

The war was nearly over, but the 90th wasn't through yet. 
April saw it fighting south of Eisenach and, after having by- 
passed armored units, in Barchfeld. It helped take Plauen, and 
cut Germany virtually in half late in the month by slashing 
through the rail center of Hof . Just before the final bell rang, 
the Tough 'Ombres crossed the Czechoslovakian border. 


91st Infantry Division 

"Powder River! Let 'er Buck!" 

The Powder River is just one of many small streams in Mon- 
tana, but a lot of Italians and Germans know it well from the 
war whoop of the 91st Division, first Division to reach the Arno 
River in Italy, and the outfit that smashed the Gothic Line, took 
Leghorn, and ended up its wartime travels by making a junc- 
tion with Marshal Tito's Yugoslav forces in Trieste. 

The men who wear the Evergreen on their shoulders— sym- 
bol of the Far West whence the 91st's personnel came in World 
War I, and where the Division trained for both wars— inherited 
their battle cry from a bunch of Montanans who used it in 1918 
to answer a sergeant who wanted to know where they hailed 

The Powder River began to course up through Italy after 
the Division had several weeks of realistic training in French 
Morocco. On June 3, 1944, just one day before the capture of 
Rome, the Evergreen was first carried into action by the 361st 
Regimental Combat Team, a few miles south of the Italian capi- 
tal. The whole Division first swung into battle oil July 12, near 
Chianni, as the Fifth Army began its march on the Arno River. 
Germans entrenched in prepared positions looked down from 
the mountains on the advancing 91st, but by July 18 the Divi- 
sion had fought its way through Terriciola, Bagui, Capanneli, 
Pensacco, and other towns, and had reached the river. 


Meanwhile, the 363d Regimental Combat Team, detached 
from the Division, had swung toward the key port of Leghorn, 
at the gates of which the Fifth Army had been battering for 
nearly four weeks. In a surprise thrust, the Powder River men 
knifed into the city and took it on the 18th. Only two days later 
elements of the same regiment had advanced to the outskirts of 
Pisa, and another important objective was about to fall. 

In September the Allies in Italy ran into the Germans' Gothic 
Line, the toughest defensive positions in the Mediterranean. 
Pillboxes ringed with minefields and wire studded the country- 
side, and fanatical Nazis fought from within them. Each pill- 
box had to be knocked out individually, often at hand-grenade 
range. The peak of Monticelli in particular stood in the way of 
the 91st, but the Powder River men took the peak and smashed 
through the Gothic Line in ten days, as riflemen stormed into 
fortifications so strong 105-millimeter howitzers couldn't breach 
them. When the 91st took Futa Pass, the Gothic Line became 
just another line on a tactical map. 

Pursuing the enemy from the Arno to Loiano, the 91st was 
next stopped by the Caesar Line. In October, near Liverguano, 
the Division fought its bloodiest battle along a rocky cliff almost 
perpendicular in spots. Flanked on both sides by towering 
mountains, Doughboys had to sling their weapons and climb 
with both hands to get at the enemy. That barrier fell on October 
13, and then the Division ran into Mt. Adone, a Gibraltar-like 
obstacle protecting the approaches to Bologna. For six months 
the 91st fought under its deadly heights, until April 15, 1945, 
when the Fifth Army launched the attack that spilled out into 
the Po Valley. The 91st swung over to the Adriatic coast and 
supported the drive northward of the British Eighth Army. As 
the Germans in Italy surrendered, the Powder River men were 
swarming into Trieste. 


92nd Infantry Division 

The Germans did a lot of talking about being the "Master 
Race." They invented a long list of inferior peoples, conspicu- 
ous among whom were Negroes. But that was before the Nazis 
ran into the 92nd Division. The Buffalo outfit had a few theories 
of its own, too, including the motto "Deeds Not Words." That 
turned out to be pretty effective counter-propaganda against 
the Germans— especially the hundreds of them who were cap- 
tured by the colored soldiers of the 92nd during its nearly nine 
months of action on the Italian front. 

The 92nd, many of whose officers and all of whose enlisted 
personnel are Negroes, was activated on October 15, 1942, and 
among the camps at which it trained was Fort Huachuca, Ari- 
zona. There, many years ago, when the American Army was 
chiefly concerned with Indians, a detachment of colored soldiers 
was assigned. To keep warm during the cold winter on the 
prairies, the soldiers killed buffalos and clothed themselves with 
the hides. The startled Indians began to call them "Black Buf- 
falos " and the 92nd's shoulder patch and nickname carry on 
the tradition of those early American fighters. 

This war's Buffalos embarked for North Africa in June 1944, 
and soon thereafter were assigned to the Fifth Army front in 
the Italian Apennines. In September elements of the Division 
crossed the Arno River and took the city of Lucca. Then the 


92nd began to live the usual routine of foot soldiers in that 
theater—long waits, slow gains, constant patrols, and endless 
suffering in the cold, bleak hills of central Italy. 

The 92nd's first large-scale attack as a division occurred in 
February 1945, when the Buff alos were given the mission of 
seizing Monte Cassala, a peak dominating the western coast 
ports vital to Allied operations. Striking out from along the line 
of the Fiume-La Force, some three miles south of the strong- 
hold of Massa, the Buff alos stormed the mountain and took it, 
to the considerable dismay and embarrassment of its Aryan de- 

During the winter months, the 92nd kept two German divi- 
sions tied down in its sector and worked up the Ligurian coast. 
Not only did it capture the ports of La Spezia and Genoa, but 
it accomplished the feats so swiftly that the Germans were un- 
able to put into effect plans they had made to render the ports 
useless when the Allies finally got into them. 

From then on, the Division rolled northward, taking Ales- 
sandria and Turin on its way. When the war in Italy ended, its 
accomplishments were summed up by General Mark Clark, 
commander of the 15th Army Group and better qualified than 
most other people to appraise the work of the 92nd. In a 
letter to Major General Edward M. Almond, leader of the Buf- 
falos, General Clark said, "To the 92nd Division went an im- 
portant assignment in the offensive which ended in uncondi- 
tional surrender of German forces in Italy. Please convey to 
your officers and men for me the fact that I value most highly 
the manner in which that assignment was carried out. We re- 
lied upon you to gain ports along the Ligurian coast and you 
carried out the attack in a most aggressive and successful way. 
You took La Spezia and then swept on to Genoa, not only tak- 
ing that great port, but preserving it from terrible bombardment 
by heavy German guns. With the ports in hand, elements un- 
der your command swept into the cities of Alessandria and 
Turin. These actions played an important part in the victory 
achieved by the 15th Army Group." 


93d Infantry Division 

The fikst Negro outfit larger than a regiment to see combat 
action in this war was the 93d Infantry Division. 

Early in April 1944, the soldiers who wear a French helmet 
on their shoulders went ashore at Empress Augusta Bay, Bou- 
gainville, during the fighting for the Northern Solomons. 

And since then they have travelled plenty. They have been 
in the Treasury Islands; at Morotai, in the Halmahera group 
of the Netherlands East Indies; and in the Philippines. 

Why the French helmet on American insignia? It seems 
that during World War I the various regiments of the 93d fought 
not as a division but under different commands in the French 
Army. Their shoulder patch is the modern reminder of that 
distant service. 

One of the two divisions in our Army whose enlisted person- 
nel is all colored— the other is the 92nd— the 93d fought for a 
month at Bougainville, working with the 37th Division along 
the Numa-Numa Trail and the Laruma River. By the end of 
April the 93d had secured the Saua River and a good deal of 
territory east of the Torokina River, and had severely incon- 
venienced the Japs in that area by denying to them a supply 
route from southern Bougainville. 

Late in the spring of 1944, the Division was moved to the 
Treasury Islands, and, when next disclosed, had leaped the 


length of New Guinea to Morotai, where it was assigned as a 
defense force during the early months of 1945. Then the 93d 
moved on to the Philippines. 


94th Infantry Division 

There were dozens of Allied Divisions in the European The- 
ater of Operations, but for nearly four months one of them— the 
94th Infantry— fought a strange war on a 450-mile front all by 

When most of the Germans retreated back across France 
toward their own borders, after the breakthrough out of Nor- 
mandy, some of them sought refuge in the ports of the west coast 
of France. Those at Brest gave up after six weeks of siege, but 
those at St, Nazaire and Lorient remained a menace. The 94th 
got the job of keeping them bottled up. 

For 111 days the division kept a watchful eye on the 60,000 
Germans in the two ports, with frequent battles on the perime- 
ters of the enemy positions. Perhaps one of the oddest roles in 
the war was that played by the division's cavalry reconnaissance 
troop, which secretly established itself on an Atlantic island be- 
tween the two ports, to observe German sea traffic back and 

Rarely before had a division operated on so wide a front and 
with such thinly held lines. To reinforce its own ranks, the 94th 
trained and equipped 29 battalions of French troops, who later, 
with die 66th Division, took over many, of the division's respon- 

The 94th had headed for its "forgotten" war in Brittany right 


upon landing in Normandy on— coincidentally— D-plus-94, after 
a stormy crossing of the Channel during which some units were 
at sea as long as 30 days. For a while die men of the black and 
gray numerals thought they'd never get to see the main part 
of the war at all. 

But they soon had those illusions shattered. The Dough- 
boys of die Division— first of all American divisions to have its 
three principal units designated "Expert Infantry Regiments"— 
rushed northward from Brittany on New Year's Day, 1945, to 
help fill the gaps on the Third Army front caused by the shift- 
ing of General Patton's forces to help stem Rundstedt's counter- 

Then the 94th ran into the Siegfried Switch Line, a series of 
strong buffer defenses on the Moselle and east of the Saar River. 
For the next five weeks the Division fought there, first merely 
holding ground and then, as the German bulge was lopped off, 
attacking through the Switch Line with the 10th Armored Divi- 
sion. By erasing this line, the 94th cleared the Saar-Moselle 
triangle and payed the way for the capture of the key city of 

Then the 94th drove forward and forced a bridgehead across 
the Saar, at times paddling furiously against a 7-mile-an-hour 
current which gave the German defenders additional time to 
hurl steel at die oncoming Doughs. By early in March the 
Division had consolidated its gains across the Saar and was 
ready to strike again. 

On March 16 the 94th was given the job of spearheading the 
Third and Seventh Armies' drive to the Rhine. Eight days later, 
the Division was at the river. It had taken the prize industrial 
city of Ludwigshafen, had fought for 195 consecutive days, and 
had captured more than 17,000 prisoners. The "forgotten" Di- 
vision had made itself well remembered in a war it no longer 
had to worry about being left out of. 


95th Infantry Division 

"Give us Der Fiihrer in Berlin— and make it collect!" 

That was the command issued to startled German telephone 
operators by men of the 95th ("Victory") Division following a 
lightning drive to the Rhine that caught the inhabitants of 
Rheinhausen, and the Nazi garrison defending it, flat-footed. 

They didn't get Hitler on the phone, although the lines to 
Berlin were still intact, so quickly did the Victorymen strike, 
but it is a cinch that Adolf had heard of the 95th Division. It 
was this Division, called the "Bravest of the Brave," which 
planned and executed one of the most daring maneuvers of the 
war during the capture of the city of Metz. 

Metz was protected by a ring of bristling forts, including Fort 
Amanvillers, the three Canrobert Forts, and Fort de Feve, east 
of which spread the intensive Lorraine fortifications. To try to 
take the city by head-on assault would have been suicide, so the 
95th pulled the "hidden ball" trick on the Nazis. It set up a 
phony front composed of three rifle platoons, one antitank pla- 
toon, cooks, clerks, and other regimental headquarters and ser- 
vice company personnel. The small force, using loudspeakers 
and other means of deception, fooled the Germans into thinking 
that an entire regiment was fronting the forts. The fake en- 
abled the 378th Regiment to sweep around the northern tip of 
the fortifications and attack from the rear. Within three hours 


Feve was captured. Two hours later the 378th took Some- 
court. Then Saulny, Vignuelles, Plesnois, and Norroy-le- 
Veneur tumbled. On the thud day of the operation the three 
Canrobert forts were assaulted and captured. Meanwhile, the 
379th Regiment was battering away at Fort Jeanne d'Arc, strong 
guardian of the western approach to Metz. A bloody battle fol- 
lowed as the outfit smashed through the German main line of 
resistance and ran wild through seven towns to reach Metz. 

In the 14-day battle for Metz the Victorymen killed 1,557 of 
the enemy, wounded 3,546, and captured 6,082. 

The 95th headed for the Saar late in November and once 
again pulled a trick that prompted a commendation from the 
present Secretary of War, Robert P. Patterson. The Victory- 
men crossed the Saar without the loss of a single man. They 
crossed in rubber boats. Not a shot was fired. Once across the 
river, the Doughs of the 95th turned south toward the approach 
to the main highway bridge over the Saar. It was the only 
bridge over the Saar in that area, and the 95th needed it intact. 

The men took it intact, by once again striking with lightning 
speed. A radio operator in a German amored car, frantically 
pounding out a call for help, was bayoneted. A second Kraut, 
sprinting for the demolition switch on the bridge, was shot dead, 
five feet short of his goal, by a battalion commander, whose men 
then hit the bridge and began cutting demolition wires only 
seven minutes before Nazi engineers were scheduled to blow up 
the bridge. The advance elements of the 95th found 6,000 
pounds of explosives under the bridge. 

Guns from every pillbox within range cut loose as the Ger- 
mans realized what was happening to their prize bridge. But 
the 95th secured both ends of the crossing, and although it con- 
tinued to be a hot spot for more than a month, every Doughboy 
in the Division crossed it. 

The battle for the Saarlautern was one of the most vicious 
of the war. The city's three suburbs across the bridge were in- 
tegral parts of the Siegfried Line. Massive pillboxes and bunk- 
ers were sandwiched between houses, and others cleverly 
camouflaged as commercial buildings. A battalion objective for 
an entire day might be a single block, or a part of a block. It 
was house-to-house, bunker-to-bunker fighting as the men of the 


95th encountered mines and booby traps, 88mm. guns firing 
point-blank. There was a savage hand-to-hand encounter in a 
ballroom. "There was plenty of dancing there," one of the 95th 
soldiers said, "but it wasn't a slow foxtrot. It was a dance of 


96th Infantry Division 

The 96th Infantry Division wasn't kidding on April Fool's 
Day. On April 1, 1945, two regiments of the "Deadeye" Divi- 
sion stormed ashore at Okinawa, where for nearly three months 
the Division was to come up against some of the worst fighting 
of the whole Pacific war. 

Okinawa was the second big campaign for the Deadeyes, 
who took their nickname because of their marksmanship pro- 
ficiency during their nearly two years of training in the United 
States. Activated in August 1942, with a cadre drawn from the 
7th Infantry Division, they sailed for Hawaii in July 1944, and 
continued training there— meeting up with the 7th, back from 
Attu. On October 20, the 96th entered combat, landing at 
Leyte in the first hours of General MacArthur s invasion of the 

The men who wear the overlapping blue and white dia- 
monds, standing, respectively, for courage and purity, helped to 
liberate Leyte in two months of fighting. Their Division paper, 
the Deadeye News, ran a daily box score of "Good Japs"— dead 
ones— and by the end of the Leyte campaign the 96th had 7,000 
notches on its collective rifle. It had a good collection of Jap 
souvenirs, too, including one of the largest of any war— a whole 
Jap cannon collected by four enterprising artillerymen who 
towed it behind a carabao back to their battery. 


Remaining on Leyte during the start of the Luzon operation, 
the 96th was re-equipped and got set for its next job— Okinawa. 
Hitting the beaches under Tenth Army command, with its 
brother Division, the 7th, at its side, as it had been on Leyte, the 
96th immediately claimed one distinction when one of its ser- 
geants, racing in 600 yards with a precious bundle on his back, 
firmly implanted the first American flag on the soil of the 

Then came weeks of steady fighting against fanatical resis- 
tance from Japs who had to be burned and dug out of hidden 
caves. The Deadeyes swarmed over Tombstone Ridge, and^ in 
mid-May, hit their hardest opposition at Conical Hill, overlook- 
ing the Yonabaru Airfield. When the 96th took Conical Hill, 
on May 14, it deprived the Japs of their last good observation 
point on Okinawa. Then the Division gobbled up the airfield, 
A month later, the Deadeyes cracked the center of the Jap 
southern defense line by taking Yaeju Hill and pushed on to the 
south. Just a day before the official end of the campaign, which 
was announced on June 20, the assistant commander of the 96th, 
Brigadier General Claudius M. Easley, was killed in action. A 
crack shot himself, he had had much to do with the sharpshoot- 
ing of the rest of the Deadeyes— men like Private First Class 
Clarence Craft, who won nationwide fame for killing 30 
of the enemy during his first combat action, and breaking a 
stalemate that had held up two regiments for ten days. 

Seven thousand dead Japs had seemed like a substantial 
number on Leyte, but by the time the Deadeye News got around 
to printing box scores at the end of the Okinawa campaign the 
figure had been left far behind. By then, the Deadeyes' collec- 
tion of "good" Japs had reached the impressive total of 20,000. 


97th Infantry Division 

Six months before V-E Day, it looked very much to the men of 
the "Trident" Division as if their first war action would be 
against the Japanese. At that time the Division, which had 
been activated in February 1943, Was stationed in California, 
with its training all completed and its men ready for battle. But 
in the Army plans can change quickly, even plans involving the 
14,000 men and hundreds of vehicles of a division. Just two 
years after its activation, in February 1945, the 97th sailed for 
the European Theater of Operations. 

In the complicated design of the 97th's shoulder patch, the 
three prongs of the trident represent the states from which the 
personnel of the outfit were originally drawn— Maine, Vermont, 
and New Hampshire. Neptune's trident was selected as an ap- 
propriate symbol since Maine and New Hampshire touch the 
Atlantic Ocean. The blue of the shield stands for the fresh- 
water lakes of New England, the white of the border for the 
snow-covered mountains of the region. 

The 97th landed in France at Le Havre, and was first as- 
signed to the Fifteenth Army. Held in reserve for several 
weeks, the Division then marched from France to Belgium and 
on into Germany, where it was assigned to the First Army and 
thrown into action near Diisseldorf during operations to liqui- 
date the Germans trapped in the Ruhr pocket. After only a few 
days in that area, the Division was moved down along the Rhine 


to Bonn, at the southern end of the pocket. On April 3, the 97th 
crossed the Rhine, and then went back into action along the 
Sieg River, capturing Siegburg and several other German towns. 
Patrols of the 97th frequently sneaked across the Sieg during 
this fighting in canvas boats. Then the Division began to move 
back toward Diisseldorf again, to close the pocket from the 

During the final mopping-up operations in the pocket, the 
97th took thousands of prisoners. Thenit was transferred to the 
Third Army, was shifted to General Patton's front, and was 
committed to action again near the town of Hof . The 97th re- 
mained in battle for five weeks, moving up with the Third Army 
into Czechoslovakia. 

At a point near the Gzechoslovakian city of Luditz, patrols 
from the Division met up with elements of the Russian Army. 
After V-E Day, the Division was moved back into Germany, and 
then prepared to sail back to the United States for redeployment 
to the Pacific. And in the fall, finally, the Division that had ex- 
pected to begin its travels in Jap-held territory found itself in 
Japan, as one of the two Divisions— -the 86th was the other— that 
actually got redeployed from Europe. 


98th Infantry Division 

The 98th Infantry Division never got to fire a shot in combat, 
but it wasn't for any lack of desire. The luck of war kept the 
division stationed in Hawaii from the time it went overseas- 
April 1944— until the Japanese surrendered sixteen months 

But the 98th got a look at the enemy, if only at an enemy 
already defeated. The "Iroquois" Division was one of the Divi- 
sions selected for occupation duty in the home islands of Japan. 

The Indian Chief shoulder patch of the 98th Division has a 
long history behind it. The Division, between World Wars, 
was kept alive as a Reserve outfit by the New York officers who 
had served in World War I, and their insignia reflects their geo- 
graphical origins. New York was the home of the old Iroquois 
Confederacy, composed of five Indian nations, and the five 
feathers on the Chief's head symbolize this ancient government. 

Blue and orange was selected as the divisional colors be- 
cause they had earlier been the colors of the Netherlands House 
of Nassau, which sent its colonists to New York. 

The Chief himself? The Iroquois men of today identify him 
as Hiawatha. 


99th Infantry Division 

The capture, intact, of the Remagen Bridge, was one of the 
major turning points in the Allied victory over the Nazi "war 

The men who achieved it have been praised in all languages 
except the German and Japanese, and rightfully so. 

But the men who held the Remagen bridgehead, against the 
most savage counterattacks, have been slightly neglected, and 
wrongfully so. 

The men of the 99th Infantry Division, who wear the blue 
and white squares, taken from the coat of arms of William Pitt, 
on their shoulder patch, were among those who denied the 
Nazis' efforts to re-take the vital bridgehead. 

They went into this battle without much combat hardening, 
but they held their ground. The black background of their 
patch, representing the steel of Pennsylvania, was rightfully 

After fighting out of the Remagen bridgehead, the GIs of 
the "Checkerboard" Division captured scores of German cities 
and towns. The Germans were in full rout, and the 99th ex- 
ploited this advantage with a drive of blitz proportions. They 
never gave the Nazis a chance to take a breather, to reorganize. 
One prisoner told the Division's G-2 that he hadn't seen an of- 
ficer in a week, and had no idea of where the main body of his 
unit had gone. The 99th moved so fast in this drive that it 


was not unusual for the division headquarters to move forward 
each day. 

It was the 99th which, after crossing the Wied River, sped 
in double columns down the super highway to capture Limburg, 
communications center on the Lahn River. The Lahn, with 
Limburg as its hub, was the last natural water barrier between 
the First and Third Armies, east of the Rhine. 

Joining the Third Army's push toward Austria, the 99th bore 
down on Ingolstadt and captured a Panzer Lehr (training) 
division, whose strength had been cut from 10,000 to 3,000. 

The Checkerboards were on the offensive for 24 days in 
March, capturing 200 German towns and overrunning 495 
square miles of enemy territory. 

At the war's end the 99th was deep in Germany at Warzburg. 
Its record showed that it crossed not only the Rhine, but the 
Erft Canal, Wied and Dill Rivers, and many minor tributaries 
as well. 

The Checkerboards got their first combat in Belgium in 
November 1944, when they relieved the 9th Infantry Division 
and 102nd Cavalry Group, and engaged in a rousing artillery 
battle with the Nazis near Wirtzf eld. A month later they aided 
in the defense of the V Corps sector north of the Roer River. The 
Checkerboards were in the midst of a fierce armored fight dur- 
ing the push on Elsenborn at the start of the year. After taking 
Elsenborn, the 99th drove on to capture Berg, and then prepared 
itself for the push into Germany. In March, the Division started 
a surge that drove it into the Reich at Aachen. It then swept 
past Duren and Jiilich, turned north at Diisseldorf , back down 
to the southeast to Remagen, and from there across the Rhine. 


100th Infantry Division 

On the first celebration of Infantry Day, June 15, 1944, a 
battalion of the "Century" Division marched smartly through 
the streets of New York City. It was an impressive parade, and 
the men of the 100th were glad that they had been singled out 
to put on the show. It wasn't their first distinction, either. A few 
weeks before that, one of them, a technical sergeant, had been 
picked as the first recipient of the Expert Infantryman Badge. 

But the 100th still wasn't too happy. Nine days before, thou- 
sands of Infantrymen like themselves had stormed the beaches 
of Normandy, and the Century Division was still a parade- 
ground outfit in the States. 

A year later the story was different. 

Resting in Europe after V-E Day, the 100th could look back 
on a distinguished combat record of its own. The technical 
sergeant who had had a badge pinned on him by Lieutenant 
General Lesley J. McNair had turned it in for a better one— the 
Combat Infantryman Badge. And he wasn't a technical sergeant 
any more; he had won a battlefield commission. And on many a 
shirt that had been plain in New York's parade was pinned a 
Purple Heart. 

The Century Division landed in Southern France on Octo- 
ber 20, two months after the Allied invasion from the Mediter- 
ranean. The three veteran infantry divisions that made that 
landing— the 3d, 36th, and 45th— had had little rest in many 


months of battle, and the 100th was rushed up to the line. 
Eleven days after it reached the European continent it relieved 
elements of the 45th on the Seventh Army front, south of the 
Meurthe River in eastern France. 

Crossing the Meurthe at Baccarat, the Division captured an 
important German supply base at Raon-l'Etape, and, ripping 
through the German defensive positions in the lower Vosges 
Mountains, took Moyenmontier, Senones, and St. Blaise. By 
seizing and holding Schirmeck, the 100th prevented the enemy 
from moving down through the Bruche River Valley and en- 
dangering the subsequent Seventh Army drive into Alsace and 
to the city of Strasbourg. 

As winter came on, the Centurymen swung north toward the 
Maginot Line. At the south end of the line, the most heavily 
fortified point was the town of Bitche, protected by the strong- 
hold of Fort Schiesseck. On its way to Bitche, the 100th en- 
countered fanatical opposition from the Germans, and when it 
got there, itiound itself up against a series of four-foot concrete 
emplacements and numerous blockhouses, all backed up by 
thundering batteries of German artillery. Fort Schiesseck itself, 
a bare ridge dotted with blockhouses, was a tough nut to crack, 
but the Century division reduced it despite direct hits from 
German 88s on advancing Infantry units, despite hard, snow- 
covered ground, and despite a seemingly endless series of fierce 
enemy counterattacks. 

When it was all over, the 100th received high praise from 
General Jacob L, Devers, 6th Army Group commander. "Your 
great accomplishments," he said, "forced the enemy to give up 
die offensive action on your front." 

Af terwards, the 100th assisted materially in cleaning up the 
enemy forces in the huge Saarland pocket between the Third 
and Seventh Armies. On the second celebration of Infantry 
Day, it could look back on a hard job well done, 

101st Airborne Division 

Surrounded at Bastogne, cut off from all supplies, and with 
tremendous forces of Nazi "supermen" closing in for the kill, the 
101st Airborne Division was asked to surrender. 

"Nuts!" was the answer of the 101st s acting commander, 
Brigadier General Anthony C. McAuliffe. 

"Nuts!" echoed his men, thus giving to American military 
tradition a slogan that will live forever with such battle cries as 
"Don't give up the ship!" "I have just begun to fight!" and "Do 
you . . . want to live forever?" 

For this heroic action— an action that more than any other 
blunted Rundstedt's mighty winter offensive against the Allied 
forces— the whole 101st was awarded the Distinguished Unit 

The men who wear the screaming eagle on their shoulders 
are many-sided. They're rough, tough, unyielding, in battle. 
But it was the 101st men who held the first full-scale art exhibit 
in liberated Europe. In their drive across France, and then into 
Nazidom up to aiid including Berchtesgaden, they captured a 
cache of priceless paintings, stolen from the Louvre and other 
museums by Hermann Goering and his cohorts. The works of 
art were tastefully arranged, lighted, and beyond a sign pro- 
claiming that the display was by courtesy of the 101st Airborne, 
GIs were invited to gaze upon millions of dollars' worth of art 
treasures. Paratroopers who had withstood the fiercest Nazi 


attacks at Bastogne acted as guides and instructors during the 
art exhibit. 

It was the men of the 101st who captured two of the most 
notorious Nazi fanatics. They first put the irons on Robert Ley, 
leader of the Nazi labor party, and one of Hitler's leading 
councilmen. Their second— and biggest— bag, was Julius 
Streicher, the infamous perpetrator of racial hatred, under 
whose orders thousands of Jews were scourged and killed. 

The 101st, after a long period of training in England, made its 
D-Day landing in France without major loss, and began its 
inarch across Normandy. Strong resistance Was met near 
Ste.Marie-du-Mont, but the Division fought its way through to 
Carentan, a vital German stronghold. 

In December the 101st was rushed to Bastogne in trucks. 
Hold. Hold. Hold. No matter what. That was its orders. At 
the finish of the Bastogne battle General McAuliffe said of his 
oflicers and men: "With the type of soldier I had under my 
command, possessing such fighting spirit, all that I had to do was 
to make a few basic decisions— my men did the rest." 

A British corps commander, near the end of the Holland 
campaign, told Screaming Eagle soldiers: "I have commanded 
four corps during my army career, but the 101st Airborne 
Division is the fightingest outfit I ever had under my command." 

Where did the 101st get its Screaming Eagle shoulder 

It goes back to the Civil War and the "Iron Brigade," one 
regiment of which possessed the famous war eagle, "Old Abe." 
A sergeant carried him into the smoke and fire of a civil war 
battle and the eagle, perched on a shield between the national 
color and the regimental color, screamed above the roar of the 
guns. The eagle, it is said, went through 36 battles, being 
wounded at Vicksburg and again at Corinth. During the battle 
of Corinth, the men of the 101st will tell you, a Confederate 
general offered a substantial reward for the bird's capture or 

But he didn't have to pay off. 

The eagle of the 101st screamed defiance at the enemy many 
times in World War II. 


102nd Infantry Division 

The Doughboys' dream— a ringside seat at a decisive battle, 
with someone else doing the fighting— came true to the foot- 
sloggers of the 102nd Infantry Division. 

One of the last battles fought in Germany, just before the 
unconditional surrender of the Nazi war machine, was fought 
near Tangermiinde, and the men who call themselves the 
Ozarks, and who wear an O and a Z on their shoulder patch to 
prove they aren't fooling, were witnesses, not participants. 

The battle was fought between the Russians advancing on 
the Elbe River, and the Nazis who were trying to get across the 
river to surrender to, the men of the 102nd. 

The fire fight went on for hours, but the Ozarks didn't dare 
join in— even if they had craved another chance at combat— for 
fear of hitting the Russians. So, they just took it easy on their 
bank of the river, and watched the Reds and the Nazis slug it out. 

The Germans finally managed to cross the Elbe, cutting 
through thousands of civilians who were retreating in face of the 
onrushing Reds, to lay down their arms to the 102d. They then 
boasted of their cleverness in escaping the Russians. These 
German soldiers, craven quitters, were the last elements of the 
once mighty German Ninth and Twelfth Armies. 

The Ozarks went overseas in September 1944, but did not 
see action until near the end of the year. Serving under the 
Ninth Army, the Ozarks entered combat near the Roer River, 


taking Lovenich, and then fighting in the Miinchen-Gladbach 
area. Late in February 1945, the Ozark Doughs spearheaded 
the Ninth s crossing of the Roer, and then attacked north, toward 
the Rhine. In their dash to the Rhine, the "Hillbillies," as they 
do not mind being called, overran 86 towns and cities. 

One of the most important spots to fall to the 102nd was 
Krefeld, a key railroad and communications center. At this city 
the Division stored its supplies in caves that the Romans had 
used centuries before as barracks, and, when taken by the Yanks, 
were the site of a tremendous rocket factory. 

The Ozarks chased the Germans from the Rhine to the Elbe, 
and, on reaching the Elbe north of Magdeburg, did extensive 
patrol duty while awaiting the arrival of the Russians. On May 
4, the German Ninth and Eleventh Armies surrendered to the 
102nd at Worgl. The Division was at this town on V-E Day. 


103d Infantry Division 

For many months, the Allied forces in Italy struggled slowly 
toward a junction with the Seventh Army, fighting on the south- 
ern flank of General Eisenhower's forces on the Western Front. 
Finally, just before V-E Day, two American units met in Italy, 
south of the Brenner Pass— the Fifth Army's 88th Division, and 
the Seventh's 103rd. 

The soldiers who wear a giant cactus on their shoulders had 
driven down through the pass where Hitler and Mussolini had 
connived. The "Cactus" Division had come from a triumphant 
entry into Innsbruck, capital of the Austrian Tyrol, which had 
been taken by the 409th Infantry Regiment to the accompani- 
ment of a wild ovation from the Tyrolese. 

But it wasn't all glory and cheers for the 103rd. 

They had some hard battles starting on November 9, when 
they went into combat and helped the VI Corps of the Seventh 
Army launch its attack through the Vosges Mountains. The 
Cactusmen, after crossing a river and taking a key hill dominat- 
ing St. Die, had cracked through the mountain and 14 days later, 
spilled out into plains beyond. And one of their units, Company 
I of the 411th Infantry, had staked a claim to being the first 
Seventh Army outfit to touch German soil, when it fought its 
way into Wissenbourg. 

In December and January, the Germans counterattacked, 
just as they were doing in the Ardennes up north, and the 103rd 


saw hard fighting as it helped to stem the enemy tide. On 
January 25 and 26, the Cactusmen were conspicuous in crushing 
a German salient at Schillersdorf, as die Nazis made their final 
all-out bid to retake Alsace. 

A little later, the Division crossed the Palatinate border at 
the same spot the Seventh Army had occupied three months 
earlier, before the German counteroffensive had forced it to 
withdraw temporarily. Then, in the rugged Hardt Mountains, 
the 103rd took on some of the toughest enemy positions, and 
crawled successfully past the concrete pillboxes the Germans 
had installed to defend the area. 

After its junction with the Fifth Army, the 103rd returned to 
Innsbruck and went on guard duty there. When the war ended, 
the Cactus Division organized sight-seeing tours for its soldiers 
who had already traveled so far. One private first class was 
asked for his opinion of these tours, and his answer might have 
been made by any GI in Europe. "I'd like to see some of the 
places I went through on the double with my nose in dirt," 
he said. 


104th Infantry Division 

"Nothing in hell must stop the Timberwolves" is the slogan 
of the 104th Division. Nothing in Germany did. From die 
moment it went into action as part of the Canadian First Army in 
Belgium on October 23, 1944, the "Timberwolf" Division com- 
piled an impressive record of wartime achievements. Under the 
command of Major General Terry de la M. Allen, already famous 
for his leadership of the 1st Infantry Division in North Africa, 
the 104th had scarcely arrived in Europe when it began to make 
news, by its realistic training in forward areas which had been 
cleared of the enemy only a short time before. In Holland, the 
Division spearheaded the drive of the British I Corps across the 
Mark River and to the Maas River. Both British and Canadian 
forces expressed official admiration of the courage and enthus- 
iasm of the Timberwolves. 

Moving over to the American First Army front, the 104th 
relieved the 1st Infantry Division at Aachen and, on November 
16, jumped off toward the Roer River. In ensuing battles, it 
distinguished itself by the effectiveness of its night operations. 
It surprised its own superiors by the speed with which it con- 
quered the great industrial cities of Eschweiler, Weisweiler, and 
Stolberg, prompting Lieutenant General J. Lawton Collins, com- 
mander of the VII Corps, to pay tribute to the 'leadership, dash 
and sound training of the division." 

On its way to the Roer, the 104th forced a crossing of the 


Inde River, in a brilliant series of night attacks that confused the 
Germans and upset their defensive plans. In a few days, the 
Tiraberwolves had cleared the entire sector assigned to them 
between the Inde and the Roer, and had won further credit for 
themselves by their skill in taking Lammersdorf, Inden, and 

During Rundstedt's breakthrough, the 104th occupied a 
defensive sector on the Roer, opposite Diiren, remaining there 
until nearly the end of February, with the principal mission of 
preventing the Germans from advancing again in Aachen. That 
job completed, the Division headed toward Cologne, seizing 
Diiren and Huchem-Stammeln on the way, and taking their 
main objective on March 7. Once again the Timberwolves' 
prowess at night featured their progress. 

Fifteen days later, the 104th crossed the Rhine at the 
Remagen Bridgehead, and in nine days advanced a total of 193 
miles east and north, ending up at Paderborn. Linking up with 
die 3d Armored Division there, the 104th halted briefly and then 
started off on another quick advance, this time covering 175 
miles in 15 days and culminating at the Mulde River. On its way 
the 104th crossed the Weser and Saale Rivers, and captured 
Halle, Bitterfeld and Delitzsch. 

Finally, just before V-E Day, the 104th linked up with the 
Russians along the Elbe River. 


106th Infantry Division 

Several weeks after V-E Day, it was announced from Europe 
that the 106th Infantry Division had been assigned the job of 
guarding thousands of German prisoners of war. No outfit had a 
better right to claim that job than the "Golden Lion" Division, 
for the 106th, in the war's major setback for the Allies in Europe, 
had more of its men captured than any other American division. 

The story began in mid-December, when the 106th, which 
had left the United States only two months before, was moved 
up toward the front and— because it was without any previous 
combat experience— assigned to a supposedly relatively quiet 
sector in the Ardennes. 

Then it happened. Rundstedt, who had secretly been plan- 
ning an all-out counteroffensive, gave the word, and the massed 
might of the German armies smashed^ into the American lines. 
There is always one point at which the attack is heaviest— and 
that was the point at which the 106th was stationed. 

The 106th was deployed along a rocky, wooded ridge called 
Schnee Eifel, near the city of St.Vith, with its men scattered 
along a 27-mile front. In the foggy dawn of December 16 the 
Germans began their attack, with a tremendous artillery barrage. 
The pro-Nazi residents of St.Vith, tipped off in advance, had 
scurried into their cellars, and the fury of the German barrage 
crashed into the positions of the 106th. Then came the enemy 
tanks and the enemy infantry, and, along with them, English- 


speaking German soldiers disguised in captured American MP 
uniforms, to add confusion to the scene. 

For two ghastly days, the 106th fought back, though vastly 
outnumbered by the oncoming enemy. The 422nd and 423rd 
Infantry regiments held Out as long as they could, without food, 
water, or ammunition, and finally sent- through a last radio 
message that they were destroying their equipment. Then there 
was silence. The remaining regiment of the division, the 424th, 
hung on grimly near St.Vith, and helped to keep the Germans 
from overrunning that vital communications center. 

When the 106th*s casualties were added up, it had lost 
8,663 men, some 7,000 of whom were prisoners. 

But the Golden Lion wasn't licked yet. Moved to the rear to 
re-organize, and with its ranks filled with replacements, it 
stormed back into the Battle of the Bulge in January and stayed 
in action till the counteroffensive had been crushed. Later it 
took up the fight on the south flank of the First Army's sector in 
the Siegfried Line, and in March it was pulled back again, this 
time to Rennes, and held in reserve. 

As German resistance began to crumble from north to south, 
the 106th was brought back toward the lines to help cope with 
the terrific problem caused by the thousands of prisoners falling 
into Allied hands. By the middle of June, the Golden Lions had 
control over 16 prisoner-of-war enclosures with 910,000 inhabi- 
tants—more than 15 times the total number of Germans taken 
by the AEF during World War I. Ardennes had been avenged. 


Americal Division 

The Americal Division is not the American Division. 

Americal is not the nickname of a division; it is its name. 

And the men who wear the Southern Cross shoulder patch of 
our Army's only active unnumbered division would rather you 
didn't forget it. 

When the war started there was no Americal Division, and 
none was contemplated. But there were a lot of Japs on the 
rampage in the Southwest Pacific, and as part of the Allied plan 
to throttle any hopes they might entertain of invading Australia 
and the islands immediately off its coast, Task Force 6814 was 
rushed to Australia and then over to New Caledonia. Troops 
trained for action on the decks of their ships. 

The Japs never dared hit Australia, or New Caledonia, either, 
but Task Force 6814 wasn't through. Its defensive mission 
accomplished, it began to prepare for the attack. Its various 
units were organized into a regular infantry division, under 
Major General Alexander M. Patch, who was later promoted to 
command of the Seventh Army on the other side of the world. 
Its name— derived from a combination of America and New 
Caledonia— was invented by a sergeant in its ranks. 

Its deeds spoke for themselves. 

The story began in October 1942, two months after the 1st 
Marine Division landed on Guadalcanal. Sent in to relieve the 
Marines, the Americal found that there was still plenty of Jap 
resistance. Henderson Field was firmly in our hands, but from 


the nearby heights of Mount Austen, the Japs had excellent 
observation on the vital airfield. The hill had to be taken, and 
on December 17 the Americal's 132nd Infantry set out to do the 
job. Seven times the Doughboys charged up, and seven times 
Japs of the crack Oka Regiment counterattacked. But finally the 
Japs were washed out, and they lost all interest in Henderson 
Field. For actions like that, some elements of the Americal 
were rewarded by the Navy with its Presidential Unit Citation— 
the only Army units to be thus honored. 

Fighting on Guadalcanal lasted until February 1943, and the 
Americal moved to the Fiji Islands for defense of that area and 
further combat training. Once again no Japs dared come near 
them, and once again they set off on an offensive mission when, 
in December 1943, they joined the fight at Bougainville. On 
Christmas Day, the Americal went into the line. It stayed on 
Bougainville for nearly a year, battling the Japanese in thick 
jungle on the edges of an American perimeter beyond which 
thousands of enemy soldiers waited, suicidally throwing them- 
selves again and again at our positions. By the time the Americal 
was relieved there, on December 10, 1944, it had established 
itself as a veteran, jungle-wise outfit. 

Its experience came in handy. It was transported north to 
the Philippines, where General MacArthur's forces had landed 
on Leyte late in October. In less than five months, Americal 
units saw action on no less than thirteen Philippine islands. 
After mopping up on Leyte and Samar, the men who wore the 
Southern Cross landed on the small islands of Ticao, Burias, 
Biri, Capul, Poro, Mactan, Cauit and Olongapo, and hit the 
major islands of Bohol, Negros and Cebu. The men who had 
started out without a name and who ended up without a number 
had. done all right. 


Philippine Division 

You didn't see many soldiers around during most of the war 
with the carabao of the Philippine Division on their shoulders. 
Everybody knows why their insignia were so little on public 
exhibition. They were among the defenders of Bataan. 

The Philippine Division was a Regular Army outfit stationed 
in the Philippine Islands, and composed of Regulars on tours of 
duty in that area. 

When the Japanese struck in December 1941, the Division, 
along with thousands of Filipinos put under arms for the defense 
of their homeland, and also existing units of the native-born 
Philippine Scouts, tried gallantly to halt the inexorable enemy 

General Jonathan M. Wainwright, a former commander of 
the Philippine Division, knew what the trained soldiers of the 
outfit could do under normal conditions, but he never realized 
to what heights of gallantry they would rise in spite of hopelessly 
inadequate food, ammunition, and medical supplies. They just 
wouldn't give up. 

These were the men of the foxholes of Bataan. Their division 
was the first to engage in battle with the land armies of one of 
our enemies in World War II. 

They knew the terrible cost and the agony of defeat. 


They hoped in vain for the help their country was not yet 
able to send. 

They fought when no one could have blamed them for 

They were cited three times for their heroism. 

When they finally had to quit, those who were still alive 
suffered the tortures and indignities of the Death March and , 
long years in filthy Japanese prison camps. 

Their division ceased to exist as an active Army unit. Its men 
were gone, its records were gone— everything but its spirit was 

Now a few of those men are back home again. They wear 
their shoulder patch with pride, too, but perhaps with the special 
pride of men who have tasted all the worst of war. 


1st Cavalry Division 

The 1st Cavalry Division and the 37th Infantry Division 
staged one of the hottest competitive races in modern warfare 
for the honor of being the first to reach the city of Manila. 

The race started at Lingayen Gulf, and the 1st Cavalry won 
by a few hours, thanks to a final all-out blitz that carried it 114 
miles in 60 hours. By being the first troops to reach the capital 
of the Philippines the 1st avenged General Jonathan M. Wain- 
wright, courageous defender of Corregidor and Bataan, and a 
former brigade commander of the division. 

One of the "Hell for Leather" Division's first orders in Manila 
was to punch forward, at any cost, and relieve the some 4,000 
civilian internees in Santo Tomas University. In a spectacular 
dash through the barricaded, burning city, and with the enemy 
defending from every house and building, the 1st, with Sherman 
tanks as a spearhead, overwhelmed the Japanese garrison at the 
University and liberated the near-starved internees. 

The 4,000 prisoners, most of them American citizens, never 
will forget the shoulder patch of the 1st— a large shield of 
Cavalry color, yellow, with black diagonal bar and horse's head 
in upper right hand corner. The bar signifies the division as first 
in name and battle. 

Dismounted early in 1942, the 1st Cavalry Division landed 
in Australia in July of 1943, and for months slaved at amphibious 


training and jungle fighting methods. It was a hard-hitting 
Doughboy outfit, ready to carry on the tradition of successes that 
elements of the division had started in the Civil and Indian wars, 
when it invaded the Admiralty Islands in February 1944. The 
Division landed on Los Negros Island and, despite intense 
opposition from the Japanese, swept inland to seize and secure 
Momote airstrip within half an hour. It also captured Manus 
Island, later to be transformed into one of the Navy's great 
Pacific bases. 

The Division next went into combat in the bloody battle for 
Leyte. For its action there, against the finest Japanese combat 
divisions, the Division was cited. The former horsemen, who 
dote on speed of attack, established a near record when, within 
five hours after hitting the beach, they took the heavily defended 
Gataisan airfield, and, a day after landing, captured Tacloban, 
capital of Leyte. Also, they took the nearby island of Samar. 

No Doughboy outfit ever fought with greater courage and 
stamina than did the 1st when it was given the mean task of 
securing and holding the mountainous country separating Ormoc 
and Leyte valleys. For 42 days of the monsoon season the men 
endured what General Walter Krueger described as "the most 
brutal terrain and conditions American soldiers have ever been 
asked to stand." The rainfall was torrential, and of ten it rode 
on the wings of gales that reached 80 miles per hour. They 
sweated it out during the day and near froze at night. Food, 
ammunition, and medical supplies had to be brought in by air 
drop, by native carrier trains, and by carabao pack. They fought 
their way up trails knee-deep in mud, waded neck-deep jungle 
streams, while under almost constant artillery, mortar and small- 
arms fire. There was much hand-to-hand work with the fanatical 
Japs, and on several occasions cooks, engineers, signal, and quar- 
termaster units were used in the line. For each of its own sol- 
diers killed on Leyte, the 1st accounted for 24 of the enemy. 

The 1st Cavalry Division is rough, tough and rugged, and 
proud of it. But it is equally proud of being just about the most 
spit-and-polish outfit of them all. There is a saying in the South 
Pacific that when you see an MP, up to his waist in mud, but 
with shined shoes and wearing white gloves, you know you are 
close to the 1st Cavalry Division. 


Armored Insignia 

All soldiers assigned to armored units wear shoulder insignia 
of the same basic design. The triangular patch's three colors 
signify the three arms of the service which were merged to form 
our armored forces: blue for Infantry, red for Field Artillery, 
and yellow for Cavalry. 

The superimposed tank tread, cannon, and thunderbolt 
represent the mobility, power and speed of armor. 

Soldiers assigned to non-tactical armored organizations, such 
as the Armored Center and the Armored Replacement Training 
Center, wear the plain triangular patch without numerical 
embellishment. Armored Corps are designated by the appro- 
priate Roman numeral. Insignia of our 16 armored divisions 
bear the Arabic numeral appropriate to each one. 


1st Armored Division 

In the closing months of the titanic struggle that drove 
Germany to its knees, there were countless references to the part 
played by American armor in the victory drive across Naziland. 

Yet, the outfit that probably contributed more than any other 
to the success of our armor wasn't even in Germany— it was down 
in northern Italy slugging it out with the Nazis there. 

To the 1st Armored, die "Old Ironsides" Division, rightfully 
belongs much of the credit for the battle brilliance of American 
armor. It could just as well be called the "Guinea Pig" Division. 
For it was one of the first, and for a long time the only, American 
armored outfit in action. It learned on the battlefields of North 
Africa and Anzio lessons that were taught its sister units prior 
to combat, so they didn't have to learn the hard and bloody way, 

In the North African campaign, where it was often on the 
defensive, the 1st learned the necessity of tank-infantry coopera- 
tion and coordination, and in every period out of the line it 
spread that gospel, perfecting teamwork. 

The lessons the 1st learned in the classrooms of Oran, 
Mateur, Fa'id Pass, Kasserine Pass, Cassino, and Anzio, became 
chapters in the textbooks studied at Fort Knox, Kentucky, home 
of the Armored Center and the Armored Replacement Training 

There is scarcely a type of terrain, except jungle, over which 


the 1st Armored Division has not fought. It swirled through the 
sand of the Tunisian desert, plowed through the Pontine marshes 
below Rome, churned through the mountains in the Apennines 
campaign, and slashed along the plains of the Po Valley. 

The 1st Armored sailed for Northern Ireland in April 1942, 
and trained there for many months under the guidance of British 
tankmen who had faced the Nazi blitzkrieg in Holland, Belgium, 
and France. The 1st Armored had its first taste of combat when 
it went ashore at Oran at the start of the historic North Africa 
campaign. The Oran plan was a simple one— a pincers move- 
ment from both sides to pinch off the city and airfields on the 
outskirts, while troop-laden destroyers crashed the boom across 
the harbor to capture the dock area and save port installations 
from destruction. It was a brief battle, but the 1st Armored made 
its first down payment in human life. An entire battalion of its 
Armored Infantry was lost when shore lights spotted the destroy- 
ers charging the harbor and shore guns sank them. 

Soon afterward, the 1st Armored Division was attached to 
the famous British Eighth Army, and there was hardly a major 
engagement in which the men of Old Ironsides failed to take 
part. They fought at Maknassy, El Guettar, and Fa'id Pass, but 
not as a division. The battle for Tunisia had reached a critical 
stage before the 1st got its first chance to operate as a whole. 
The 1st Armored held Mateur. After what was known as the 
"Battle of the Mousetrap" the Division, in three days of swift, 
stabbing action slashed clear across to the Mediterranean at 
Porto Farina. The flying columns of the 1st Armored avenging 
the mauling it had taken earlier at Kasserine Pass, chopped the 
opposition to bits and took 23,000 prisoners. 

After action before Cassino, the 1st Armored Division was 
shifted to Anzio in the maneuver that was designed to turn the 
flank of the Gustav Line and force the Nazis to retire from 
Cassino. For four months, as the 93-square mile Allied toehold 
absorbed every bit of punishment that the Germans could throw 
at it, the 1st Armored was there, a mobile reserve, plugging holes 
when it seemed the Germans must break through and drive our 
forces into the sea. When it wasn't fighting, the Division was in 
training, preparing for the day of the breakthrough. The lst's 
training area was so close to the front lines that the Germans 


could see the maneuvers through binoculars and plaster the 
tanks with artillery fire. 

When the race for Rome began the 1st Armored Division was 
in the lead. The men of the 1st Armored swear that it was their 
reconnaissance squadron that was first into Rome. They have 
the word of Rome's chief of police, whom they captured, that 
there were no other Allied troops in the city when the forward 
elements of the Division slipped in. The 1st Armored didn't stay 
around Rome to enjoy the sights. Five days after the fall of the 
Eternal City, the division was 200 miles north, chasing remnants 
of the Hermann Goering Panzers. 

Before Bologna, the whole Division left its vehicles and 
fought on foot as Infantrymen. It took Milan. It split northern 
Italy in two by racing through to the Swiss border at Como. 
When the war ended it was headed for Austria. 


2nd Armored Division 

In November 1942, when the Allies landed in North Africa, the 
ultimate goal of every unit and every soldier in the invasion was 
Berlin. In the Western Assault Force that had the job of taking 
Casablanca, back then, was part of the 2nd Armored Division— 
the outfit that, in later fighting in Sicily, France, Belgium, 
Holland and Germany, fully established its right to the proud 
name "Hell on Wheels." And when the American Army began 
rolling into Berlin, 32 months after the African landings, the 
2d Armored rode at the head of the procession, our first division 
to enter the enemy capital. 

After French resistance ceased in North Africa, the 2nd 
Armored trained with the Fifth Army along the Spanish Mo-' 
rocco frontier. Elements of the division took part in the Tunisian 
fighting, in conjunction with the 1st Armored. In July 1943, Hell 
on Wheels struck again, this time at Gela, Sicily. The twisting 
trails of that mountainous island didn't provide the sort of ter- 
rain conditions the tankers were used to, and were a far cry 
from the flat plains of North Africa. But the 2nd Armored none- 
the less contributed materially to the quick defeat of the enemy, 
fighting at Campobello, Palermo, and other hot spots. 

While the 1st Armored moved into Italy with the Fifth Army, 
the other of these two veteran tank units was shifted back to 
England to train for the invasion of France. Early in June 1944, 


Hell on Wheels charged into Normandy. Its powerful machines 
roamed far and wide across the European countryside, striking 
into France, Germany, Holland and Belgium. On June 12, 1945, 
the whole outfit was awarded the Belgian Croix de Guerre— 
marking the first time that Belgium had ever conferred that 
decoration on a foreign division. 

The 2d Armored Division liked to be where the fighting was 
tough, and when the Germans broke through the American lines 
in the Ardennes counterofferisive, that was where the 2d Arm- 
ored went. When the First Army rallied from the blow and 
began to turn back the enemy threat, the American attack on the 
north flank of the Nazi bulge was spearheaded by the tanks and 
men of Hell on Wheels. 

For the dash from the Rhine to the Elbe early in the spring, 
the 2d Armored was transferred to the Ninth Army. It reached 
the Elbe ahead of all other American units, and was ready to 
plunge across and sail straight into Berlin, when its fierce dash 
toward the city was halted by orders from higher headquarters. 

The Russians, of course, got to Berlin first, but no 2d Arm- 
ored man will ever admit that he couldn't have been there sooner 
if he'd been given a free rein. So it was only the military equiva- 
lent of poetic justice that, when the citizens of Berlin finally got 
their first glimpse of American armed might, they saw Hell 
on Wheels. 


3d Armored Division 

You will never have any trouble addressing a soldier of the 
3d Armored Division. 

"Call me Spearhead" is his favorite phrase. 

The speedy outfit that led the First Army out of Normandy 
and across France, closed the Falaise Gap, crashed the Siegfried 
Line, and took Cologne, claimed a lot of "firsts" for itself. It even 
announced that one of its men was first to swim in the Rhine. 

The Spearhead Division liked to he out front, and that led to 
tragedy in Germany when its own commander, Major General 
Maurice Rose, got out in front of even his own men, was cap- 
tured by a German tank, and was killed by the tank commander 
during the surrender. 

From the breakthrough west of St.Lo to the final surrender 
of the Nazis, the 3d Armored was in the thick of things. After 
unwieldy tank fighting in the hedgerows, the Spearhead broke 
out at Marigny, with the 1st Infantry Division, and headed due 
south to Mayenne. In mid-August, the 3d Armored was ordered 
to close the Falaise-Argentan pocket in which the German 
Seventh Army was caught, and the Division finished the job 
near Putanges on August 18. By August 24, the Spearhead had 
rolled through Courville and Chartres and was poised at the 
banks of the Seine. 

The next evening the 3d Armored began to jump the river, 
and, once over, it began a mad dash across France that brought 


it clear up to the Siegfried Line in just 18 days. Soissons, Mons, 
Namur, and Liege were among the dozens of places in the swath 
cut by the Spearhead. At Mons alone* the 3d Armored cut off 
40,000 Germans and captured three generals among 8,000 
prisoners. And then the Spearhead set forth on the first invasion 
of Germany since the days of Napoleon: 

September 10: It fired the first American artillery shell to 
land on German soil. 

September 12: It became the first unit to pass the German 

September 13: It became the first to take a German town 
(Roetgen) and first to breach the Siegfried Line. 

September 15: It became the first division completely to 
pierce the Siegfried Line. 

September 18 (as the final touch) : Its antiaircraft gunners 
became the first Americans to shoot down a German plane from 
German soil. 

Driving on, the Spearhead was halted Only by the Ardennes 
counteroffensive, when it swung into the fray near Houffalize 
and cut an important highway leading to St.Vith. 

The 3d Armored Division took Cologne and Paderborn, 
helped the 2d Armored shut tight the back door to the Ruhr, 
crossed the Saale, and, with other American units converging on 
Berlin, raced to the Elbe near Dessau, where it saw its last action. 
It had many an achievement behind it: the liberation of political 
prisoners of the Gestapo from a prison at Cologne, the seizure 
of a trainload of V-2s near Bromskirchen, and even the surrender 
of a weird band of 200 members of the Hitler Jugend, led by a 
16-year-old boy, who formally handed over their weapons 
(small-sized dress daggers) to representatives of the 3d Armored 
at the end of the war. 


4th Armored Division 

From the day it was activated, the 4th Armored Division has 
scorned a nickname. 

Let the other outfits give themselves tricky, blood-curdling, 
or humorous nicknames, but not the 4th Armored. All the way 
down the line, from the big brass to the buck private, the men 
feel that "4th Armored" is sufficient. 

Nevertheless, the 4th Armored Division does have a nick- 
name. It was thrust on the Division by outsiders who fought 
along with it in France, Germany and Czechoslovakia. It is 
known as the "Breakthrough" Division. It hammered and 
slammed at Nazi defenses from the time of the Normandy in- 
vasion until the collapse of the Wehrmacht, and it never failed 
to break through. 

There is one name that will always be associated with the 
4th Armored. 


The 101st Airborne Division had been surrounded at 
Bastogne by the Nazis' last great counteroff ensive. The acting 
commander of the 101st had thrilled the Allied world by his 
reply of "Nuts!" to the German demand to surrender or be 
destroyed. The desperate troops of the Airborne outfit, subjected 
to a merciless pounding, had to have help. Some one had to 
break through the German ring of steel and men and effect their 


Four medium tanks from the 4th Armored rolled up to a 
forest-lined roadway, all guns firing. The commander of the 
lead tank unbuttoned the turret and called to the worn soldiers 
in a ditch: "It's all right, boys— this is the 4th Armored-" 

"Hot damn, we're mighty glad to see you," the men of the 
Airborne division called from their positions. The contact with 
the heroic defenders of Bastogne was made by the 37th Tank 
Battalion and the 53d Armored Infantry Battalion. 

After six months' training in England, the 4th Armored went 
into action in Normandy. It started breaking through from the 
day it landed. It played a key role in cutting off the Brittany 
peninsula, made a lightning sweep across France north of the 
Loire River, defended the Moselle bridgehead against crack 
panzer units, and made the first crossing of the Saare River. 

The 4th Armored did not rest on its laurels after the brilliant 
rescue of the 101st at Bastogne. After Bastogne, the Division 
drove its way through the Eifel Mountains, secured the high 
ground over the Kyll River, and shelled and captured Bitburg. 
Then the "Breakthrough" outfit really shifted into high gear. In 
an all-out blitz it roared 65 miles in 48 hours, coming to a halt 
opposite Coblenz. Here the Division joined the Seventh Army 
and began a successful hunt for V-l rocket launching sites. 

Working with the Seventh Army, the 4th Armored crossed 
the Rhine near Worms and gave the territory in that vicinity a 
terrific pasting. It aided materially in the rapid advance of the 
Seventh Army by seizing intact a bridge across the Main River, 
and then drove on to Hanau, 10 miles east of Frankfurt-am-Main. 
Here the 4th Armored fought off numerous counterattacks by 
the heaviest German armor. 

Six months after they had been in combat the men of the 
4th Armored Division had received 1,959 decorations. 

The 4th Armored moved so fast that it often stretched its 
supply lines to the breaking point. But it never slowed down. In 
one day it took 8,000 prisoners. At the close of the war the 4th 
Armored had joined the 90th Infantry Division and moved with 
it into Czechoslovakia. 


5th Armored Division 

Three yeabs before it plunged into the battle for the liberation 
of Europe the 5th Armored Division officially adopted the 
nickname, "Victory" Division. 

It was a wise choice, because when V-E Day came, the 5th 
Armored, after almost a year of bitter fighting, was the nearest 
American outfit to Berlin. It had fought its way from the beaches 
of Normandy, and the men and machines were ready for a crack 
at the capital of the Reich when the shattered German forces 

The Doughs of the 5th Armored will tell you that the month 
of fighting in the Hiirtgen Forest and on the approaches to the 
Roer River was the most bitter they experienced. Held down by 
the terrain, weather and thousands of mines, the Tankers and 
Infantrymen fought a hacking, foot-by-foot battle. They lived 
in mud and rain and ice, and were constantly exposed to tre- 
mendous artillery concentrations. But this month of savage 
battle broke the German spirit. Never again did the Nazis fight 
with the ferocity they displayed at Hiirtgen. 

The "Victory" Division went into combat in August 1944. 
For the first time in the history of armored warfare a full armored 
division was to be sent driving through enemy territory in a 
spectacular 300-mile mission to disrupt and trap enemy forces. 
Fifteen days after the first 5th Armored tanks had rolled through 
the gap between Coutances and St.L6, they had reached 


From here the 5th Armored turned east to cut off German 
units west of the Seine. Paris lay only 50 miles away, but the 5th 
swung north toward the junction of the Eure and Seine Rivers. 
In this natural pocket the Division trapped thousands of Nazis 
vainly attempting to cross the Seine and escape. 

Paris liberated, the Victory Division started a fast drive to 
the Belgian border, 130 miles north. It cut through Compiegne 
Forest, crossed the Oise and Aisne Rivers, and then the Somme. 
A month later the Division was at Conde on the Belgian border. 

New orders sent the outfit racing another 100 miles to the 
Meuse River. Speeding onward, the 5th Armored spearheaded 
the drive that liberated Luxembourg. On September 11, 1944, 
elements of the Victory Division crossed the Our River into Ger- 
many, and thus earned the distinction of being among the first 
Americans to fight on German soil. 

In November the Victory Division, working with the 90th 
Infantry Division, crossed the Moselle River. Fighting hard 
in December during the "Bulge" period, the 5th Armored 
greeted 1945 by continuing to advance against the heaviest kind 
of opposition. At Coblenz, the 5th Armored smashed and then 
mopped up all enemy resistance. 

By spring the 5th Armored Division had rolled to the Weser 
River, and in May, driving north of Brunswick, it reached the 
Elbe and crossed it. V-E Day found the Victory Division's sights 
set on Berlin. 


6th Armored Division 

Armored Divisions are supposed to be able to travel pretty 
fast, but few have eclipsed the speed records set in France in the 
summer of 1944 by the men of the 6th Armored, who called 
themselves the "Super 6th" and more than justified their claim 
to the name. Landing in Normandy on July 24, the 6th Armored 
put its tanks in high gear and headed for the coast of Brittany. 
In two weeks, the Division had pulled up at the outskirts of 
Brest, where its Combat Command A trapped 40,000 Germans 
and earned the nickname of the "Brassiere Boys." During its 
dash, the Super 6th averaged 25 miles a day, and in one 24- 
hour period covered 48 miles. It was that sort of fast traveling 
that prompted the division commander, Major General Robert 
W. Grow, to exclaim to one of his staff, "These maps are too 
small. Give me a map large enough so that I won't run off it 

Leaving Brest to the Infantry, the Super 6th cruised on 
down to Lorient, and then turned east and rumbled through 
Orleans, Autun, Nancy, and Metz. Across France, at Dijon, it 
met up with the Seventh Army moving north from the Medi- 
terranean, and pushed its way to the Saar River, within sight of 

Then came the winter counteroffensive, and the 6th Armored 
was shifted to the south of the Ardennes, just north of Mersch, 


Luxembourg, to relieve the 10th Armored. Five days later, it 
was in the thick of the action to the north of Bastogne. For 
23 days, the Super 6th fought in the winter hell of the Bulge. 
Tank turrets froze, and tank doors wouldn't open. Rifle bolts 
got so stiff from the cold that they would operate only after being 
beaten with hand grenades. For five days, the Super 6th— 
now measuring distances in yards rather than miles— was pushed 
slowly back under the tremendous weight of the German as- 
sault. Then it held, and slowly the pendulum began to swing 
the other way, and the 6th Armored drove the enemy back. 

The Germans threw everything they had at the Super 6th. 
Heavy artillery concentrations and barrages of rockets crashed 
incessantly, with tank and infantry forces charging behind them. 
Bombers blasted the 6th Armored from above. But the Divi- 
sion dug in, and by the time the enemy threat had been crushed, 
late in January, the Super 6th had pushed the Germans right 
across the Our River and back into their own country. 

Then the American tankers began rolling again. Theirs 
wasn't all a war of machines, however. There was one sergeant, 
for instance— one among many like him— who, when his tanks 
were knocked out, seized a carbine, picked off 26 Jerries, and 
then, running out of ammunition, grabbed a submachine gun 
and shot three more. The men and machines of the 6th Ar- 
mored added one more important page to their own military 
history when, on March 20, the Third and Seventh Armies were 
linked up by the junction of the 26th Infantry Division and the 
6th Armored. By the time the Super 6th was through, it had 
convinced a lot of Nazis that maybe they weren't supermen 
after all. 


7th Armored Division 

Anybody who couldn't undekstand the need for gas rationing 
late in 1944 and 1945 might stop and reflect for a minute on the 
combat career of the 7th Armored Division. During nine months 
of action, from August to May, the "Lucky 7th"-just one of 15 
armored divisions that saw action in the European Theater of 
Operations— used up 3,127,151 gallons of fuel, well over 10,000 
gallons a day. And at that it ran out of gas. 

It was at Verdun that the 7th Armored had to halt and wait 
for its fuel to catch up with it. Landing in Normandy on August 
10, it set out in the direction of Chartres and, before it stopped, 
had covered 620 miles in its first 21 days in Europe, passing 
through Reims, Melun and Chateau-Thi erry on the way. 

The Lucky 7th really got around. It traveled nearly 2,000 
miles, and served under four armies and eight corps. After 
being refueled at Verdun, it headed for Metz, and battered 
away at the outlying fortifications of that stronghold along with 
Doughboys of the 5th Infantry Division. Then the 7th Armored 
was transferred up to Holland, under the British Second Army. 

On December 16, the 7th Armored Division was at StVith, 
when the Germans launched their counteroffensive in the Ar- 
dennes. For the next month, it fought furiously in the Battle of 
the Bulge, first losing ground and then grimly battling its way 
back into its former positions. After the Germans were thrown 
back, the Division got a brief rest, and then, late in March, came 


back to the front and broke out into Germany after crossing the 
Rhine at Remagen, where the 9th Armored had seized the 
bridge. Roaming unchecked in enemy territory, the Lucky 7th 
was ultimately assigned to reducing the Ruhr pocket. The 
Germans tried to make the job as uncomfortable as possible, 
even turning flak guns primarily used for antiaircraft against the 
advancing 7th Armored. But the Division was not fazed by this, 
and had the last say when, on April 16, it forced an entire panzer 
corps to surrender to it. 

From the Ruhr, the 7th Armored journeyed north again, re- 
joining the British north of the Elbe and pointing its tanks 
toward the Baltic Sea. It had made a specialty of collecting 
German cities— Giessen, Hemer, Menden, Grevesmuhlen and 
Dassow were among the ones it had taken— but now it began to 
specialize in collecting Germans. It began picking up so many 
prisoners that merely controlling the flow of its prisoner traffic 
became a problem, and at one time it had 51,000 in its camps. 
By the war's end, the 7th Armored Division's total bag of prison- 
ers was computed at 113,042— not a bad return for the expendi- 
ture of fuel. 


8th Armored Division 

Once known as the "Show Horse" Division, the 8th Armored 
Division proved it was a work-horse outfit in the brief time it was 
in combat against the Nazi military machine. 

It would have been in the fight against the Wehrmacht much 
sooner had it not been so valuable as a training division. Before 
it sailed for overseas on Election Day, 1944, the "Iron Snake," as 
it is now known, trained more than 50,000 officers and men, who 
were shipped abroad to fill gaps in eight other armored divisions. 

When our tank forces took the severe mauling at Kasserine 
Pass, 4,000 trained replacements of the 8th Armored were 
shipped directly to Tunisia to help save the day, and launched 
the drive which pushed Rommel out of North Africa. 

The 8th Armored reached France on January 4, 1945, and 
assembled in the Bacqueville area of upper Normandy. The 
German drive for Strasbourg brought a rush call for armor, and 
the division moved across France in the midst of a blizzard, 
skidding into Pont-a-Mousson three days and 350 miles later, 
only to find that the enemy thrust had been halted. 

First taste of battle for the 8th Armored came in the Third 
Army's preliminary attack against the Moselle-Saar salient, 
Supporting the 94th Infantry Division, Combat Command A 
drove the crack 11th Panzer Division out of the fortress towns 
of Nennig, Berg and Sinz. The end of February found the 8th 


Armored Division at Roermond, Holland, where it had been 
rushed secretly to relieve the British 7th Armored Division— part 
of the famed "Desert Rats" of Africa— and join the Ninth Army. 

The Roer crossing was in progress, and Major General John 
M. Devine pushed the 8th Armored across to take Merbeck and 
Tetelrath. Combat Command B captured Lintfort and Rhein- 
berg to clean up the west bank of the river, overcoming cross-fire 
from panzerfausts, mortars, burp guns, mines and antitank 
weapons. The men of the "Iron Snake," meeting opposition all 
the way, rolled through Ossenberg, Broth, Grunthal and Mill- 
ingen, as the Germans fought to get all possible troops and 
equipment across the Rhine. 

The Rhine crossing was made by the Division on March 27, 
all men and equipment crossing within 24 hours. The 8th Arm- 
ored then took on the 116th Panzer Division in its drive toward 
Dorsten, keypoint of the northern flank of the then forming 
Ruhr River pocket. Plunging past Dorsten, the 8th Armored 
fought through Polsum, Kircnellen, Zweckel, Buer Massel and 
Kol Berlich, grinding down compressed German opposition. 

Came a shift in Allied plans, and the 8th Armored drove 
toward Soest, taking Collinghausen, Nordert and Ebbinghausen. 
The Division fought on into Unna, near Dortmund, and then 
was pulled out of combat and sent rolling 100 miles to Wolfen- 
buttel. From there the 8th Armored moved farther south, and 
soon was massed around Blankenburg, at the foot of the Harz 
Mountains. Following heavy air and artillery attacks in the 
morning, the tank-infantry assault was made> and the city was 
captured before dark. This was the last major battle waged by 
the 8th Armored Division. After V-E Day, the division moved 
to Chotieschau, Czechoslovakia. 


9th Armored Division 

With the possible exception of the titanic clash at El Alamein, 
no tank engagement in World War II will be longer remembered 
than the dashing armored coup which first put the American 
Army across the Rhine at Remagen bridge. 

All Allied commanders— indeed, the world— applauded this 
bold action which was one of the major developments leading to 
the collapse of the German Army. 

The 9th Armored accomplished this historic feat. 

Striking with lightning speed, scorning all risks, the 9th 
Armored moved so swiftly that it had established a bridgehead 
before the Nazis could demolish the bridge or prepare defenses 
across the river. 

Military authorities have estimated that the feat of the 9th 
Armored saved a minimum of 5,000 American dead and 10,000 

The 9th Armored, which was activated in 1942, was late in 
getting overseas. It crossed to England in August of 1944 and 
did not reach Normandy until a month later. But once on fight- 
ing soil it wasted no time. In six days after hitting France the 
9th Armored was in Luxembourg near the German frontier. 

Looked upon as a "Little Brother" by the bigger, older, and 
more experienced armored divisions such as the 1st, 2d and 3d 
Armored Divisions the 9th Armored proved it had what it takes 
when Rtindstedt launched his mighty winter counteroffensive. 


When the Nazis struck along the VIII Corps front the "Little 
Brother" 9th Armored, with no real combat experience, was the 
most powerful unit present to oppose the onslaught. 

In its first real fight the Division's three combat commands 
were forced to fight on separate fronts. Command B made a 
six-day stand at St.Vith against superior strength. Command A 
fought ten days near Echternach, then, after an all night march 
without rest, launched its part in the operation that resulted in 
the breaking of the siege of Bastogne. 

The third 9th combat command received a unit citation for 
its contribution to the epic of Bastogne. It stood up against the 
German juggernaut and delayed it for 36 hours, thus giving the 
101st Airborne time to dig in for the defense of the city. 

Proved in battle now, the 9th Armored was sent into the 
offensive between the Roer and Rhine Rivers. It couldn't be 
stopped. In seven smashing, driving days it rolled from river 
to river. 

And then it electrified the world by its action at Remagen 

After its crossing of the Rhine the 9th Armored raced to 
Limburg, brooking no opposition, and there released thousands 
of Allied prisoners of war. 

Then the 9th turned east, serving as the spearhead of the 
First Army's thrust toward the Russian lines. In full cry now, the 
Division, no longer a "Little Brother," encircled Leipzig, paving 
the way for the fall of that key city. 

The 9th Armored's final assignment was in the Sudetenland. 

The 9th Armored Division was a little late getting into action, 
but once turned loose it never put on the brakes. It was in high 
all the time. 


10th Armored Division 

November 1, 1944, is A memorable day for the "Tigers" of the 
10th Armored Division. On that day the outfit began five busy 
months of combat during which it bagged 30,000 prisoners and 
took 450 cities and towns. 

The Tiger Division didn't begin its overseas service until the 
war on the Western Front had been under way for three months, 
but the 10th got into action in time to establish its claim to 
three big "firsts": 

First Third Army division to enter Germany. 

First Third Army division to capture a major German city- 

First Third Army division to stop the Germans at Bastogne 
during the Ardennes breakthrough. 

It was Combat Command B of the Tigers that held out at 
Bastogne, side by side with the 101st Airborne, while Germans 
attacking from all sides tried to crush the American forces wait- 
ing for relief to come through from the outside. 

The Tigers first growled in anger in the Metz-Nancy area, 
and subsequently fought at the Siegfried and Maginot Lines, in 
France, Belgium, Luxembourg, and Germany. During 12 
crowded days that ended with the seizure of Trier, the 10th 
Armored cleared a good deal of the Saar-Moselle triangle, earn- 
ing special praise from General Patton, crossed the Saar, cap- 
tured Saarburg, took a total of 65 towns, and rounded up 10,000 
prisoners, including 4,500 at Trier alone! 


Toward the end of the war in Europe, the Tigers were shifted 
to the Seventh Army and lashed deep into southern Germany. 
They captured Neustadt, helped the 63d Division take the 
famous city of Heidelberg, and at Uffing, in Bavaria, made an 
unexpected catch of 300 Germans, including a handful of 
colonels in civilian clothes, who were hiding in the town despite 
posted signs saying that it was a neutral zone. 

On V-E Day the Tigers were in the western part of the sup- 
posedly impregnable Southern Redoubt, where the Germans 
had boasted they would make a last, unbeatable sjand. But the 
Tigers were no longer surprised by German plans gone awry. 
They remembered their capture of Neuschwanstein Castle, for 
instance, collection point for millions of dollars' worth of artistic 
loot the Nazis had stripped from all over Europe. At the castle, 
the 10th Armored came across a letter of directions from 
Hermann Goering, art-collector extraordinary, in which he ad- 
vised his subordinates that he would use the whole Luftwaffe, if 
necessary, to transport captured treasures to Germany. No 
wonder the German Air Force didn't seem to know what it was 

The Tigers settled down for guard duty at Garmisch-Parten- 
kirchen, scene of the 1932 winter Olympics. 


11th Armored Division 

It is generally conceded that thunderbolts travel pretty fast, 
but nobody ever suspected that a whole armored division of 
"Thunderbolts" could strike as quickly as the 11th Armored 
Division did in the winter of 1944-45. 

The Thunderbolt Division (it shares the nickname with the 
83d Infantry Division) was crossing the English Channel in 
mid-December, when Rundstedt launched his counteroffensive. 
The Allies were in desperate need of all the reinforcements 
they could get, and a brand-new armored division could mean 
a lot. 

The 11th Armored hit the beaches of Normandy one morn- 
ing and instantly set off on a forced march, skidding into 
Neufchateau, Belgium, at midnight of the same night. 

The next day— just 24 hours after hitting European soil for 
the first time—the Thunderbolts roared into action. They had a 
very definite mission: to get astride the vital Neufchateau- 
Bastogne highway and prevent the Germans from gaining con- 
trol of it. The 11th Armored jumped off in an attack, and the 
Germans had to revise any supply plans they had involving that 
critical highway. 

Rarely in military history had an armored division gone into 
action so quickly from so far behind the lines. 

Once started, the Thunderbolts kept on rumbling toward the 
heart of Europe. In January, they continued to fight in Belgium, 
and the next month, with the 6th Armored, they took Trois 


Vierges and Goedange. They spearheaded the Allied drive 
across the Kyll River, fought through northern Luxembourg, 
and drove on to the Rhine, over-running Kirschweiler, Doch- 
weiler and Winnweiler. 

Swerving to the south, the Thunderbolts earned themselves 
new honors by becoming the first American unit to enter Austria. 
On their way, they paused long enough, west of Kaiserslautern, 
to help capture two German armies— the First and Seventh. In 
March, the Thunderbolts crossed the Rhine, drove toward 
Niirnberg, and sent two columns racing into Bavaria and finally 
joining up at Cham, 28 miles northeast of Regensburg and 1,200 
feet high in the Alps. They captured Linz, on the Danube, and 
on V-E Day, were assembled at Friidenthal. 

A few weeks later, while on occupation duty near Ober- 
donau, the Thunderbolts started reckoning up their combat 
achievements. In only a few months of action, they discovered, 
the 11th Armored had taken a total of 76,229 prisoners— an 
average of 600 a day and twice as many as were taken by the 
entire American Army during the last war. 


12th Armored Division 

Someone must have tied a can to the tails of the "Hellcats" of 
the 12th Armored Division when they rolled into Bavaria to 
tangle with crack troops and armor of the Nazi Army. For 37 
days the men and machines of this slugging outfit lashed at the 
Wehrmacht without let-up, and at the finish had compiled an 
astounding combat record. 

In this drive the Hellcats knocked most of Bavaria off the 
German-held map, conquering 22,000 square miles. They liber- 
ated 8,413 Allied prisoners of war (mostly Americans), and 
freed 20,000 slave laborers. But they captured prisoners even 
faster than they released them. When the 12th Armored had 
completed its drive through Bavaria, 63,000 Germans were 
enclosed in its barbed-wire stockades. 

The outfit first hit combat in December 1944, near the 
Maginot Line in France. It helped in the closing of the Colmar 
pocket, and then swung north to the Siegfried Line. In hard 
righting, it spearheaded the Third Army's drive for the encircle- 
ment of the Germans in the Saar, and then went back to the 
Seventh Army for the p\ish across the Rhine. 

Probably the Hellcats' biggest achievement— and it ranks 
with the top feats of the war— was the capture intact of a bridge 
across the Danube at Dillingen. This fob was of tremendous 
help to the advance of the Seventh Army into Austria, allowing 
the Americans to pour men and supplies across the Danube in a 


ceaseless flow. Because of a garbled radio message to headquar- 
ters, this vital bridge came close to not being used. .An officer 
radioed, "Have bridge of Danube , and it's blue." Somehow, the 
"blue" was changed to "blown" and headquarters was searching 
for another bridge when the correction came through. 

A poll conducted by the Hellcat News revealed that the 
Doughs of the 12th Armored considered the capture of the 
Alsatian town of Herlisheim their toughest job. 

It was in defense of this small village, situated on what 12th 
Armored Doughs and Tankers call "Purple Heart Plain" that the 
Division wrote the bloodiest chapter in its history. For 12 days 
the Hellcats fought two crack divisions, the 10th SS Panzer and 
the 553d Volksgrenadier. Wave after wave of German infantry 
and tank combinations smashed at the Hellcat front. The 12th 
Armored, barely a month in combat, repulsed them all. 

For its part in sealing off the Golmar pocket, the 12th Arm- 
ored was authorized by the French to wear the Colmar coat of 
arms, and many individual awards were made by the French to 
members of the division. 

On March 17, the Hellcats jumped off near Trier to spearhead 
the Third Army's assault on the Rhineland. The Germans threw 
everything they could muster in defense, but the Hellcats 
reached the Rhine in three days, and in three more they occupied 
Ludwigshafen, Speyer and Germersheim. 

Eight days later the 70th found itself as the point unit in the 
Seventh Army's drive across southern Germany. It was in this 
lightning strike that the Dillingen bridge was captured, provid- 
ing an artery through which Allied troops flooded into southern 
Germany for the climactic campaign of the European war. The 
enemy tried everything to knock out the precious span, but the 
12th Armored held it against aircraft and artillery attack until 
troops of the 3d Infantry Division arrived to take over the job. 

The Hellcats then took to the trail, once again as the tip of 
the Seventh Army's flying wedge. With the Germans on the 
run, the 12th Armored captured airfields, planes, war factories, 
and thousands of prisoners. It liberated 2^800 prisoners from 
Landsberg Prison, where Hitler wrote Mein Kampf, 

It took the 12th Armored but 37 days to clear a path from the 
Rhine to Austria. 


13th Armored Division 

The 13th Armored ("Black Cat") Division was one of the last 
outfits to clear this country for overseas combat, but in the little 
time the Black Cats were in action they clawed and scratched 
and bedevilled the Nazis just as efficiently as any of the older 
and more experienced outfits. 

The Black Cats didn't leave this country for the European 
Theater until late January 1945, and did not get into action 
against the Panzers until the closing stages of the Allied drive in 
southern Germany. Working with General Patton's Third Army, 
the Black Cats were part of the relentless surge that by-passed 
Berchtesgaden in the race to link up with the Russians. In this 
drive the men of the 13th Armored were never stopped, and 
fought with the skill and coolness of hardened veterans. 

Late in April 1945, the 13th Armored was at Alterhofen, and 
shortly afterward the division was across the Danube River, east 
of Regensburg at a point two miles southeast of Straubing. 

On May 2— less than a week before the Nazi capitulation— 
the 13th Armored Division had hammered its way to Adolf 
Hitler's birthplace, Braunau, five miles from the Inn River. 

It was in this closing action that a platoon of Black Cats cap- 
tured a German major who was so anxious to put himself in 
good light with the Yanks that he gave away the location of a 
Nazi general's headquarters. The Yanks rolled up to the place 
to investigate and made quite a profitable haul— two generals 
with their staffs. 


The experience of Lieutenant Colonel Dale E. Means of 
Valier, Pennsylvania, an assistant chief of staff of the Black Cat 
Division, illustrates the coolness of the Cats in combat. Lieuten- 
ant Colonel Means was captured during the clearing out of 
Straubing, and held prisoner for four hours. He attempted to 
talk his captors into surrender. They refused, He then told them 
that his tanks and artillery would blow the town to bits. The 
Nazis again refused. Finally, the American said, "Let's see the 
mayor." The Nazis agreed, and the Colonel was OK, because 
he knew the office of the town's No. 1 man was already in Yank 


14th Armored Division 

The 14th Armored is not known as the "Liberator" Divi- 
sion for nothing. 

It has earned that name. 

In its more than 500 miles of ranging over Germany and Nazi- 
held territory the men and machines of the 14th Armored freed 
more than 20,000 Allied prisoners of war. 

And it was poison to the German war machine. 

The 14th Armored took upward of 50,000 German prisoners. 
It captured or destroyed 500 or more German tanks. It cap- 
tured 100 self-propelled guns. It put 500 Nazi artillery pieces 
out of action. It overran and crushed 400 ack-ack guns. It cap- 
tured or destroyed more than 1,000,000 small arms. More than 
400 aircraft bearing the swastika fell to its antiaircraft guns, and 
it destroyed 50,000 tons of enemy munitions. 

Nothing German was safe from the hurtling 14th. It cap- 
tured 2,000 railroad cars and took intact 100 locomotives. It 
seized 200 factories and before the Nazi collapse it had liberated 
or captured 1,000 cities, towns and villages. 

Activated at Camp Chaffee, Arkansas, in 1942, the 14th 
Armored Division was destined to fight with two armies in the 
liberation of Europe— the Seventh and Third. 

The 14th Armored saw its first combat in the Vosges Moun- 
tains. Here it breached the Nazi defenses and poured out into 
the broad Alsatian plain, where it launched a drive from 


Hagenau that culminated in the capture of Wissembourg and 
the crossing of the German frontier. 

No armored division played a bigger part in thwarting 
Rundstedt's counteroffensive than did the 14th. It was largely 
due to the 14th's do-or-die stand that the Nazis' hope for over- 
running Alsace and recapturing Strasbourg was foiled. For days 
the 14th Armored fought a terrific defensive battle against vastly 
superior strength. 

At Hatten and Rittershofen the Germans threw three divi- 
sions— two panzer and one panzer grenadier— at the 14th Arm- 
ored. The Division came out mauled and bloody, but Strasbourg, 
which hung in the balance during the melee, was not recap- 
tured by the Nazis. 

The 14th Armored again went on the offensive when it 
cracked the Siegfried Line at two places and drove to the Rhine 
at Germersheim. It rolled across the Rhine at Worms and cap- 
tured Lohr, Bad Bruclcenau, Neustadt and other towns. Then it 
swung south and liberated 5,000 prisoners at Hammelburg, and 
outflanked Bayreuth and Nurnberg. The 14th Armored then 
was transferred to Patron's Third Army. Teamed with the 86th 
Infantry Division, the 14th took Augsburg and drove to the 
infamous prison camp at Moosburg where 110,000 Allied prison- 
ers were held. 

The Americans gave the German garrison five hours in which 
to make an unconditional surrender. SS troops opened fire on the 
Yanks. Ninety minutes later the tanks of the 14th Armored were 
rolling through the prison camp. 

In its last long dash the Liberators crossed the Danube and 
pushed to the Isar River. They were still rolling, still flattening 
the Nazis when the war ended. 


16th Armored Division 

The 16th Armored Division averaged 8,000 prisoners per day 
while it was in combat. 

But it was only in combat one day. 

That will always be a memorable day for the men of the 16th. 
Swarming into Pilsen, Czechoslovakia, after long moves across 
the continent of Europe, the 16th Armored decisively captured 
the city famed both for its beer and as the seat of the Skoda 
munitions works. 

There was only one jarring note to the last-minute triumph. 
Allied bombers, seeking out the Skoda plants, had inadvertently 
hit the beer factories as well. 

The 16th Armored arrived in France on February 5, 1945, 
and was subsequently assigned to the Third Army. Traveling to 
Niirnberg, the division got there on April 28 for final precombat 
training. On May 4 it leaped to Waidhaus, 80 miles away, and 
two days later launched its attack on the beer city, at the far 
end of the American line of penetration into Czechoslovakia. 

After its brief flurry of combat, the 16th Armored had the 
trying job of herding together German soldiers and civilians 
attempting to flee from the Russian forces in Prague. 

One well remembered tank of the 16th Armored never did 
fight at all. Separated from the division in France when the rail- 
road car on which it was lashed had to be side-tracked, the tank 
and the crew set out determinedly to rejoin their outfit. The tank 


men raced from France to Belgium, into Luxembourg and 
Germany, and on into Czechoslovakia. Finally they rumbled 
into Pilsen. 

But by the time they got there the war had ended. 


20th Armored Division 

Major General Orlando Ward was in action during only a 
few months of the European War, but he saw its beginning and 
its end. Arriving in North Africa in November 1942, with the 1st 
Armored Division, he was wounded in Tunisia the following 
April, and returned to the United States. Just two years later, he 
came back to action as commanding general of the 20th Arm- 
ored, one of the last American divisions to be committed to 
battle in the European Theater of Operations. 

The 20th Armored had made itself felt long before it went 
overseas. Thousands of men trained in its ranks had been 
shipped to Europe and assigned to other fighting units as 
armored replacements. 

But not until April 1945, did the Division get a chance to do 
some fighting under its own colors. Then it turned up on the 
Seventh Army front in southern Germany, as part of the force 
advancing on Munich. On its way, smashing into Salzburg just 
behind spearheading elements of the 3d Infantry Division, the 
20th Armored bagged a banner crop of high-ranking Nazis, 
including three lieutenant generals, a major general, and Dr. 
Paul Schmidt, chief of the Press Department of the German 
Foreign Office. 

Herr Dr. Schmidt was an especially rich find. When he was 
nabbed, he had with him a brief case containing 85,000 German 
marks and 1,000 kroner. 


After swinging south of Munich to cut off German escape 
routes from the falling city, the 20th Armored Division moved 
into an area north of Lake Chiem and, in June, was stationed at 
Traunstein, Germany. 

When the 20th's commander left the front, in 1943, the 
vaunted Afrika Korps was still very much in action, and the 
Allies were still wincing from the blows they had taken in such 
battles as Kasserine Pass. When he got back, there was no Afrika 
Korps, and there were very few corps of any kind doing anything 
but moving backward fast, or surrendering. It was a contrast 
any American would have enjoyed. 








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Map 8: Central Pacific 


Map 9: Solomon, Palau and New Caledonia groups 


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Map 11: Guam, the Ryufcyus and Japan 


irj Division 

17th Airborne Division 

24th Division 

25th Division 

35th Division 

36th Division 

37th Division 

38th Division 

40th Division 

41st Division 

42nd Division 

43rd Division 

44th Division 

45th Division 

65th Division 

63rd Division 

66th Division 

69th Division 

70th Division 

82nd Airborne Division 

101st Airborne Division 

104th Division 

106th Division 

Amorical Division 

8th Armored Division 

9th Armored Division 

10th Armored Division